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A few in game questions

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On 12/17/2020 at 8:26 PM, Rhialto said:

@Legate of Mineta: In-universe, would people find mysterious Prudence Cossins's great skill (but poor control) with incantation magic despite no apparent formal training nor wealth to account for private tutoring?

1. Is it possible to be skilled with magic yet have poor control of it, or is such understood to be a contradiction in terms?

2. Do any goblins serve as mercenaries in humans' armies?

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The reply:

"1.  If the question is: "Is it possible for a wizard to cast extremely complex spells with poor accuracy?" the answer is absolutely yes.  Not to spoil Year 6 or anything.

2.  Okay, so, "Gobelino/Goblin" is kind of a catch-all term for a whole host of small trickster figures - some are rat-like, some are waist-high men with forked beards and red hats, others are... stranger.  (Whether they have a common origin and whether they predate Gates magic is the subject of considerable debate.)  Most prefer not to be seen and are acutely territorial - and therefore don't join up with human forces - but some do, either as a result of bribery or capture.  They're generally not considered trustworthy, but they have a way of bringing bad fortune to the enemy.

3.  No - or, at least, there's no public record of it.  Even a functionally human intelligence like Pamela wouldn't be allowed to apply."

 

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14 minutes ago, Legate of Mineta said:

3.  No - or, at least, there's no public record of it.  Even a functionally human intelligence like Pamela wouldn't be allowed to apply.

Why not, what's the story behind that rule? And if it's unknown/[REDACTED], what answer would a professor give a student asking that same question?

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M;

"Officially, it's because even intelligent familiars aren't considered legally capable of making independent decisions.  The nature of the bond theoretically makes them too subject to the magical forces surrounding their wizard to allow them to consistently make informed decisions.

Less officially, it's... a recognition of the practical limits of the Bond.  Most wizards have fairly conventional familiars - dogs, cats, snakes, spiders - who never learn to vocalize and who just seem to experience magical forces radically differently than their human partners.  Putting them in conventional classrooms would be pointless, by nearly universal admission.  And most wizards would say that this is the way it should be.

If your familiar is a shade king, or even a disturbingly intelligent bird, there's kind of an open question about which figure in the relationship is the magically superior party and which is the balancer.  It tends to make the wizarding community extremely uncomfortable, as though it's a problem to be minimized rather than exacerbated by further education - and at the same time the shade king generally has better ways to spend its time than studying grammar.

So, long story short: over the centuries, very few people have even thought of admitting familiars as students, and the familiars who might actually qualify haven't generally wanted to.  Legally, it's problematic as well."

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Was this changed because of the familiar I used in some of my suggestions or where birds before also already in this position?

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What would happen if someone disguised themselves as an Academagia student and tried to enter the Venalicium Library, and the library (IIRC said to be more aware/sentient/something than a collection of books should necessarily be?) refused to admit the disguised person? What kind of spectacle would that create, if any?

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The response:

"Well, that depends on the disposition of the Venalicium.  If a door just doesn't open and if the disguised person stays cool, it can all go unnoticed.  If a door opens and a disguised person steps through and ends up marching into a Guard station with all defensive glamours inexplicably dispelled - as has been known to happen - it can be trickier."

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On 6/3/2020 at 11:56 PM, Legate of Mineta said:

it's believed that to take draconic form is to surrender yourself into the power of the dragons.  They sense you, can control you, and can remake you according to their whims.

Late catching up on this thread, but...

Does this belief apply at all to the faux dragon species, since it has the form of a dragon, though not the internal plumbing? Or does it actually have a distinct enough form (like the difference between monkeys and humans) and only vaguely resembles dragons to a human who isn't very familiar with them?

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@Legate of Mineta: Some questions inspired by fiction and traditions which I have read, as a follow-up to @Good Coyote's questions:

2. Are there traditions of surgically and magically modifying bodies in preparation for being possessed and further transformed by spirits?

3. Are there traditions of potions which allow people to perform gates magic?

4. Are there traditions of rokhs?

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Hey Coyote!

Sorry, missed your question!

Here you are:

"To some degree, it depends on how commonplace the pseudodragons are in the region.  There are secluded valleys where humans coexist with cockatrices/calcatrices - which look a lot like waist-high, two-legged dragons on the main - and they're considered good luck by the local populations more often than not.  And, of course, most people aren't bothered by small, wingless lizards at all.  (Though there are places where they were simply wiped out early in the historical record.)

For the most part anything that could be considered draconic in appearance is popularly presumed to be in some way tainted and potentially subject to corruption.

A player with a faux dragon familiar gets off relatively lightly in year one.  ;) "

Rhi;

For you:

"2.  Yes.  And, not surprisingly, they're considered Mastery practices, and are profoundly illegal.

3. There are folk tales where people drink strange substances and fall down mysterious holes or fall up into equally mysterious clouds and find themselves in strange and often otherworldly places, and there may be some truth to them - but even in the Academy there's not a lot of historical material that directly and credibly attests to it, let alone records the creation of the brews.

4.  Yes, though they're not widely known in Mineta.  Malthezar and Miya might both know stories, though. Malthezar is most likely to have some knowledge, if you ask him."

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@Legate of Mineta: Are rokhs real on Cyve, or just tales? I would think that if they were existing, then they would be extinct in the setting's present, having been exterminated by dragons and humans combined.

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Although most adventures only reference the students in the PC's year or the odd older student who has been named (Philippe's brothers, Oan, etc.) are there any unmentioned older students the PC heard something about during Y1? I imagine that at least one older student made enough of a scene at one point, whether for good or ill, that people ended up talking/gossiping about in the Great Hall (of course whether the PC ever learned the full truth of that story is likely to be doubtful at best).

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I like to imagine my Morvidus with faux dragon was invited because of it, given Storey's interest in rare lizards. Maybe it caused few problems with the student population because Storey helps out in keeping her unobtrusive? She does a lot of sneaky in the adventure too. Of course the Morvidus kids are gonna be the first to ask "where's your familiar, bro?" but the most curious ones are also quite likely to understand and not make a fuss about it, I think.

1. Does that belief also relate to Durand's -1 for dragging him into the dragon costume on the feast of fools? I never thought it needed more explanation, but that would make a lot of sense. Sort of like "this almost certainly isn't enough to put us in the power of dragons but why tempt fate."

On a different topic (and apologies if this has been covered before, a search of the forums didn't turn anything up but I have a feeling there was something in this thread that I've read before):

2. How much information do the Secrets and Silence voices have (or seem to have from the character's perspective, in hopes of keeping this info unredacted) about the character?

What I mean is... can they react (or seem to react) to things in the world around the character? Even things the character isn't aware of? As in, could you get a warning that Rui was behind you?  Do they seem aware of everything that the character is aware of, but only after they're aware? Or only aware of things that the character intentionally tells them? Or do they not seem "aware" or talk directly to the character at all, but seem to change in response to the character, but it's more like tuning into different radio stations, and you pick up something different than usual because you feel sad?  Could the character suddenly hear a series of words that sounds like a warning about pranksters, right at the moment when that warning would be helpful - but it's still more like the radio signal analogy, and it's the character's own Luck that caused them to tune into that station at the right time?

3. Assuming that 2 is redacted, could I please have any other random information about what the character's experience of the voices is like? Just would like a little more of a starting place for working on characters, but I understand if not.

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M & GC;

We've somewhat purposefully avoided giving out the full roster of Students for Years 2-5, for various reasons. We *do* think that eventually you can know all the names of the seniors, and, in later years, you'll be able to interact with at least some of them. But for now, the ones you know are the ones that are famed...or make themselves known to you. :)

That said, from the Team:

"Okay, fine.  Fifth-years Tadeos Nikopolos and Eridine Gerverau actually stole the entire contents of Regent Piaxenza's house one night while he and his wife were at a ball. Suffice to say, they are very well known. The matter was apparently remanded to the Court of Grace, which kept the verdict secret.  Part of what made the legend spread is that nobody knows for sure what happened.

1.  Durand is less superstitious than many... but, yeah, that wouldn't have helped his mood.

2.  The Secrets and Silences voices probably could tell you that Rui was behind you, yes; the limits to what they "know" seem very broad, and independent of the person in contact with them.  But for the most part, it's more the stray radio signals model; it's usually not clear what stimulus any given fragment of speech or vocalized idea is in response to.  As a rule, if they're all talking about the same thing, it's very, very rare and very, very big.

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1) Would Y2 or later allow clique to cross the same year boundary?

2) Will romantic interest approach the player on their own? If so also across the same year boundary? 

3) Is it planed that depend of the background that there be marriage talks between the player and some other student or even students of Academagia? (Think Mahouka have there an interesting way pointed out with the parent arranging meetings with people that they think where good candidates but ultimate the persons them self decide)

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And the response:

"1)  In Y2, at least, the presumption has always been that older and younger characters would be introduced primarily through the story system, with the possibility of expanding clique mechanics (as well as adding advanced and remedial classes) to be considered for later years.  It's definitely a fun idea, though.

2) Yes, they can be initiated by the Students. There's no plan to have cross year relationships, but that's more because there is no way to interact with those Students apart from Stories. Once that changes, there's not necessarily a mechanical limitation.

3) Certainly. And if, hypothetically, you were Descended from Kings, I could definitely imagine the families of Catherine or Flore or Corradin (etc.) being the ones to try to initiate romantic or quasi-romantic alliances between families.  But not in Y2."

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On 5/30/2018 at 3:27 AM, Legate of Mineta said:

If it's associated with Saisyne and the south, and especially if it's smoked (particularly stuff called "barish"), it's illegal in Mineta - as much for cultural reasons as for medical ones.  Unfortunately, these southern specialties are generally the most effective natural pain-killers - but there are legal offshoots that can be crushed into powder and mixed with hot water.

What is Pievre's view of these substances, both legally and culturally? And how commonly available/known are they in that area, if at all.

EDIT: While I'm at it, here's another few that got lost to time (for a time ;) )

On 6/9/2018 at 5:05 PM, Metis said:

5) How, if at all, does one convert to the New Gods? Say that a student from some far off place with no real religion to speak of comes to the Academagia and wishes to convert, what's needed/what happens/etc.?

6) Is there a fancy(/ier) term for the New Gods religion, or is it just "(worship of) the New Gods"?

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M;

Oh! Crossing questions/answers. :)

"The stuff isn't readily available in the Pievran hinterlands, but if you're in a city with reasonable airport facilities (say, Niemes) and know what you're looking for, it's not that hard to find.

Barish isn't legal, technically, but it's a curious kind of illegal.  If you're caught with it, you're looking at a modest fine at worst.  If, on the other hand, the Pievran Guard busts you for (say) sedition, possession of barish adds the legal presumption that you're an agent of foreign powers, and that can make your life a lot more complicated."

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Are there licenses or other ways to legally import/own the stuff, say if you were researching the stuff for it's possible uses as a painkiller?

And did you miss the edits ;)?

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M;

No, but I hadn't sent the edits in at the time. :)

Goods are explicitly licensed, no- much depends on your status, and the status of the ones importing.

For the other questions:

"5)  Faith in the New Gods has been systemically threatened and challenged by dragons or their proxies, and it demands a firm orthodoxy of its clergy. Lay worship, however, is primarily about a system of habit and ceremony, reinforced by the community, than it is about a deep understanding of theology.  If a student from a far-off place announces, "Hey, I worship the New Gods now but I have no idea what I'm doing," that would touch off a visit to your local Temple, and invitations to join the congregation in its worship, but that would likely be the depth of the instruction.

Obviously, if you show up saying that you worship some figure who is not a New God and you reject the idea of the New Gods, then you're a cultist and a threat to the political order as much as anything else.  But if you're not abrasive about it... well, it's almost like not believing in the New Gods, or not knowing how to worship them properly, is like not knowing how to use cutlery.  You're not a bad person, necessarily, you're just not civilized - and that can be corrected.

6)  It's actually generally referred to just as the "vias congruas" - an archaic way of saying something like the "correct methods."  And, again, it's usually not capitalized because it's seen as too general and obvious to be a proper name.  "How do you worship?"  "Oh, the proper methods.""

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What is the Minetan equivalent of the term "holy grail" as it pertains to a major advancement in a given field of research?

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