SolarCraft/Ikselam

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Ikselam's Craft Charms

All of these Charms branch off from World Within a Picture Style, which can be found in Time of Tumult (page 96). The first two will be familiar to anyone who has read Roger Zelazny's Amber novels; the last two draw from several sources, but my primary inspiration was the hazy recollection of a children's book I read long ago. I believe it was an adaptation of a Chinese fairy tale, and it featured a boy who drew pictures that came alive. I don't remember how it went, but I do remember that I liked it.


Window on Distant Landscapes Style

Cost: 20 motes, 1 willpower
Duration: One day plus
Type: Simple
Min. Craft: 5
Min. Occult: 4 
Min. Essence: 3
Prereqs: World Within a Picture Style

Truly skilled Solar artists can create representations so detailed that they form a spiritual link to the real location being depicted. The picture will act as a window, perfectly mirroring changes which occur in the real landscape (although it will not show people or spirits).

Anyone capable of channeling Essence can use one of these pictures as a doorway, instantaneously travelling to faraway places. It costs 1 mote to step through the picture and arrive in the location depicted. If the picture is portable, expending an additional 4 motes will bring the picture with you.

The artist must have actually seen the location depicted (magical scrying works just as well as physical presence), and damage to the picture will permanently sever the link. Catastrophic change to the depicted landscape (e.g., the creation of a shadowland or Wyld zone, complete destruction by a First Age weapon) will also render the picture useless. This Charm cannot be used on existing works, or on ones which are of less than exceptional quality.


Flawlessly Lifelike Portrait Method

Cost: 20 motes, 1 willpower
Duration: One day plus
Type: Simple
Min. Craft: 5
Min. Occult: 5
Min. Lore: 3
Min. Essence: 4
Prereqs: Window on Distant Landscapes Style

What Window On Distant Landscapes Style does for locations, this Charm does for people. The Exalt who creates such portraits acquires an almost infallible method of instant communication (and transportation, if need be).

Only those capable of chanelling Essence are capable of using the picture's magical properties. It costs 1 mote to talk to the person depicted. An additional expenditure of 1 wp is necessary if you do not wish the person to recognize your presence (they still detect it automatically). Using any Charms or other magical powers on the person depicted requires an extended Willpower contest. If the target accumulates 5 more successes than the Exalt, the connection is broken and the portrait will not work for a full day. If the Exalt accumulates 5 more successes than the target, he is free to use any powers he wishes as though the target was physically present. The target can still break the connection by expending a permanent Willpower.

Expending 10 motes allows you to step through the picture and join the person, or pull them through to your location, but only if they agree and neither party is physically restrained. If the picture is portable, spending a point of willpower (in addition to the 10 motes) allows the Exalt to take the picture with him when he steps through.

Damage to the portrait negates the Charm. Death of the person depicted does not, unless they fail to leave a ghost behind. Stealth Charms (such as Vanishing From Mind's Eye Method) which obfuscate the user's identity will baffle the connection for as long as they are in effect. This Charm does not work on existing portraits, or ones of less than exceptional quality.


Magical Realism Technique

Cost: 20 motes, 1 willpower, 1 xp
Duration: One day plus
Type: Simple
Min. Craft: 5
Min. Occult: 5
Min. Essence: 5
Prereqs: Window on Distant Landscapes Style

An Exalt who learns this Charm can create artwork which becomes real. All the artist need do is draw (or sculpt) the item she desires; once the work is finished, she reaches out and grasps the object she has depicted.

This Charm can create exceptional items easily, but it cannot create magical items or living things. It can create items of the Five Magical Materials, but these items are not enchanted and provide no bonuses beyond their basic ones until a craftsman bespells them as usual. Creating 5MM items costs an additional 1 xp, plus a permanent willpower point.

This Charm can only create single, finished objects. It cannot be used to create raw materials. There is no limit on the size of items created by this Charm, but they must be drawn life-size. The artist must also be careful to draw exactly what he wants; what you see is literally what you get. This Charm cannot be used on existing works, or on anything which is less than masterful.


Living Portrait Creation Discipline

Cost: 20 motes, 1 willpower, 1 health level, 1-2 xp
Duration: One day plus
Type: Simple
Min. Craft: 6
Min. Occult: 5
Min. Lore: 5
Min. Essence: 7
Prereqs: Magical Realism Technique, Flawlessly Lifelike Portrait Method

This mighty Charm gives the power of life itself. Its users can cause living beings to step, fully-formed, from the frames of portraits, or transmute sculpted clay or stone into living flesh. Such mighty artists were among the most learned, respected, and feared individuals in the First Age. More than a few were driven mad by the power this Charm granted them -- some say that this Charm is an affront to the Celestial Gods, and that its users are sure to earn their enmity.

People created by this Charm are normal mortals, and cost 2xp in addition to the mote cost. If the user also expends a permanent willpower point, she can create heroic mortals. Creating normal animals or plants with this Charm reduces the xp cost to 1. Animals or plants with special powers cost the same as normal mortals. This Charm cannot create demons, elementals, spirits, fey, or Exalted. It could create a person who looked exactly like an Exalt or an incarnate spirit, but the person would not have any special powers.

Note that while the user of this Charm has total control over the creations' appearance and physical attributes, their personalities may have unexpected quirks. There is no guarantee that the creations will be completely loyal to their creator (especially plants and animals).

This Charm works on both portrait and sculpture. It does not affect existing works. Only one subject can be brought to life at a time, and the work which is animated must be without flaw.

Comments

Yay! Amber meets Exalted! Very well executed. A question: how well do these Charms work in contacting people and places in other realms? Can you still communicate with someone in the Labyrinth, Malfeas, or the deep Wyld? Also, when will we see your writeup on the Jewel of Judgement Hearthstone, or the Charm description for Primal Pattern Inscription Style? :) - Quendalon

Hrm

I'm inclined to think that Trumps would be better of created as one to two dot Artifacts that as the effects of a Charm - that matches the feel better, both of Exalted and Amber, IMO.

And, farther down the tree, "It can create items of the Five Magical Materials, but these items are not enchanted and provide no bonuses beyond their basic ones until a craftsman bespells them as usual. Creating 5MM items costs an additional 1 xp, plus a permanent willpower point." - Even with a Permanent Willpower Point, this seems like a not so good idea. Even Sorcerery can't just conjure the Five Magical Materials out of nothing, nor can but jade be crafted from Ambrosia. It's not as much a matter of balance as thematic appropriateness.

Finally, I'd actually up the utility of the Living Portrait Creation Discipline. I don't know precisely how yet, but a good model would probally be the Sidereal Ride Charms- especially the ones that turn one of your Familiars into a little god. - DariusSolluman

  • well just my two pennies worth but with regards to the following statement
    • Creating 5MM items costs an additional 1 xp, plus a permanent willpower point." - Even with a Permanent Willpower Point, this seems like a not so good idea. Even Sorcerery can't just conjure the Five Magical Materials out of nothing, nor can but jade be crafted from Ambrosia. It's not as much a matter of balance as thematic appropriateness.
  • strictly speaking thats not true, the solar Lore charm 'wyld shaping technique' allows a solar to conjure the 5MM (amongst other things like warstriders etc) out of the fabric of the wyld for use in creation. it costs 20 motes per casting and while it has its own inherant dangers, none the less it is doable by an experienced Solar. esp if he takes his mates along to protect him from the creatures living in the wyld, leaving him free to concentrate on the charm. Eldmar

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