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89157Z

89157Z's Malcontented Grumbling

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I absolutely cannot play Academagia without wanting to modify it. There are things I want to condense or remove pursuant to my Less is More philosophy, there are things I want to add in flagrant contravention of it, there are hybrid concepts which add some things and remove others... I always get new ideas when I play through the game. If only the mod tools were not so slow! I remember from my forays into them that they're occasionally confusing too.

 

Is there going to be an update to the mod tools at some point?

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89157Z;

 

No, not before Y2 at any rate. ;)

 

Bah! More grumbling, then.

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The thought that brought this on this time was my thinking that the spell system might be better balanced if there was some system of power sources for magic to use. This could be aptly encapsulated in a Spellpower skill, which would have the subcomponents Ritual, Concentration, Will, and Reserves, in ascending order of speed. Tests that cared only about total power output without regard for the timespan (appropriate for formal testing) would use the overskill. Tests that compared about power output in a specified timeframe would use the appropriate subskill.

 

Reserves are 'spike' power used for instant castings. When you cast a spell that uses Reserve power, you suffer a 2-5 skill level penalty to your Reserves score for 1-3 days. If that penalty would drive your Reserves negative, you don't meet the requirements to cast the spell. Events that have you reflexively casting a spell to solve some problem should assess this cost as well. Formal spells should only use Reserves for spells that are intended to be castable in Duels.

 

Will forms the root of 'fast' power used for quick but not instant castings. When you cast a spell that uses Will for its power, you suffer a 1-2 skill level penalty to your Will score for 1-3 days. Will goes farther, but it still depletes eventually. Events where the character has a moment to think but is still under time pressure should count as casting Will spells. Will is appropriate for many formal spells, and can even show up in Duels, though in duels it should be primarily for 'support' effects rather than the big flashy invocations.

 

Concentration is 'slow' power where efficiency matters and a mage is taking care not to exhaust themselves. Spells that use Concentration for power should charge 0-1 skill level penalty (free or cheap), unless you have to concentrate the entire time to keep the spell active, in which case the drain should more closely resemble Reserve drains. Events which don't have explicit time pressure can be treated as concentration castings. Almost all formal spells not covered by Will or Reserves should be Concentration based. In Duels, Concentration spells should be weaker than water if they're castable at all.

 

Ritual is 'glacial' power, generally used where massive amounts of energy must be accumulated and utilized precisely. Casting time is sacrificed entirely to this goal. Ritual skill levels are never drained by casting, but then there wouldn't be many ritual spells to use them on anyways, not for a novice mage. Obviously, none of them are ever fast enough to use in duels or random events.

 

I was actually envisioning Spellpower as a field of study appropriate to first year students (possibly even exclusive to first year students). If I had free run of the code via tools that were up to the task, I'd dump off Enchant* to help make room in the curriculum. Not that Enchanting isn't awesome, but the crafting system is rather busted! Craft-focused classes just aren't useful in Year One. It makes more sense to relore the game so that first year students are forbidden from craft-style works.

 

 

 

(If anyone reads this and wonders why you can't use reserve and will interchangeably, it'd be because reserve power is inherently explosive. Once opened up, it all wants out at once. Spells not designed for that can't handle it; spells designed for it require it.)

*EDIT: I'd also cannibalize Enspell, my least favorite skill group.

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Aww, I like Enspell. I tend to be opposite where you stand with the game, though- I want to add more to it (such as, say, students) not less.

 

I don't think there's any possible way to do what you want with using the modtools, though. You'd actually have to hack the engine, which I don't think the Academagia crew would appreciate very much. I wish there was a way to change the way spells work exactly, too- I've had ideas of modding the game in to an Exalted fangame before- but from all I've played with it, the spell system is just set.

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Aww, I like Enspell. I tend to be opposite where you stand with the game, though- I want to add more to it (such as, say, students) not less.

 

I don't think there's any possible way to do what you want with using the modtools, though. You'd actually have to hack the engine, which I don't think the Academagia crew would appreciate very much. I wish there was a way to change the way spells work exactly, too- I've had ideas of modding the game in to an Exalted fangame before- but from all I've played with it, the spell system is just set.

 

It wouldn't take an engine hack. Just add another two parameters to each spell. One parameter requiring the appropriate level of the 'power source' skill be present in order to cast, and another parameter causing the spell to inflict drain on the power source while it was active.

 

My problems with Enspell aren't about Less is More. I hate Enspell because the Phemes skill is an offense to the lore, the Diction skill has beautiful lore but is under-utilized, and Concentration as currently used is critical to every character.

 

The Phemes skill is the worst subskill ever. It's just a grabbag of phemes. The game has massive numbers of phemes. All the others are sorted in a thematically appropriate manner, attached to skills that obviously ought to grant them. The Phemes subskill has only a flimsy excuse for existing at all.

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