Friday, February 6, 2015

BxWoD Magic: Rituals (WIP)

Rituals are spells so powerful they cannot be prepared. These magics are simply too much for a mind to contain, and only the most powerful witches can attempt them. Vampires can use only Black magic rituals; others fail automatically with all of the consequences. If they are foolish enough to attempt a White magic ritual, roll twice on the failure chart. Fringers fail automatically at rituals, though they may assist another who is performing one. (See below)

Rituals are encoded the same way that spells are. They match their descriptions in Swords & Wizardry complete, but their casting time is multiplied tenfold, as are duration and range. In addition, the GM is encouraged to add exotic components, contracts, obligations to unknown entities, and other difficulties that are requisite to cast the ritual.

Each ritual has a base chance of success of 50%. It must be lead by the highest level witch present. Vampires can lead on Black rituals if they are the highest level caster available.

The base chance of success is modified by the following variables: 

-Each level of the lead witch/vampire below 9th: -10%
-Each witch assistant (maximum 12): +X%, where X= levels of all witch assistants/2, rounded down.
-Each fringer assistant (counts toward max of 12): +X%, where X= level of fringer assistants/3, rounded down. Note that the fringer must have the ability to cast spells. Fringers who are bonded to one of the participants in the ritual add an extra 1%.
-Each vampire assistant (counts toward max) adds X%, where X=2/3 levels of all vampire assistants, rounded down. Note that vampires will automatically cause a White ritual to fail, and vampires cannot take the lead
-For White rituals, each hit die willingly sacrificed by a mortal: +1%
-For Black rituals, each hit die sacrificed from a mortal: +1%, double for heroic mortals.
-For every two hit dice of natural animals sacrificed: +1%
-Ritual is performed under a full moon (White) or New Moon (Black): +5%
-Ritual is performed on a solstice or equinox: +10%
-For each witch who has a familiar present +1%
-Doubling the casting time: +10%
-Halving the casting time: -25%
-Casters have cast a spell of the opposite color: -X%, where X is the total levels of opposite spell cast by ALL participants in the last week.
-Ritual is interrupted by combat, violence, major disruption: -50% 
-For every spell level of the ritual above 6: -5%

Note that success cannot be pushed above 95%, though it can be pushed below 1% and thus fail automatically.

If the ritual is successful, the spell works as described. If it fails, roll on the following table:

01-05: A gate opens to the Void, pulling in all participants and assistants. They are lost forever.
06-10: The lead caster is devoured by otherworldly forces.
07-10: All familiars are torn away from their masters. Victims suffer the same penalties for losing a familiar as if they had died. No new familiars will respond to the caster's summons for 3d8 months.
11-15: As above, but none of the afflicted may ever summon a familiar again.
16-20: The ritual works, but the lead caster automatically falls under a geas of the GM's choice.
17-20: As above, but the caster may refuse the geas and the ritual simply does not work, nor may anyone involved attempt or assist this ritual again for a year and a day.
21-25: The lead caster loses an experience level. If reduced to 0 level, they become a normal mortal forever more. Vampires reduced to 0 level crumble to ash.
26-30: As above, but everyone loses a level.
31-35: 21-25, but the lead caster loses 1d4 levels.
36-40: As above, but the ritual still works, though the caster's reduced level is used to calculate any effects where applicable.
41-45: As above, but all assistants also lose an experience level.
46-50: Any sacrificed beings immediately animate as wights of the same original Hit Die and attack, fighting until they are destroyed or all participants are slain, at which time they become ordinary corpses.
51-60: All participants are reduced to 1 hit point. They cannot be magically healed until they have naturally healed back up to full hit points.
61-70: The lead caster is driven insane unless they pass a Mental Saving throw.
71-75: As above, but all participants are affected.
76-80: The ritual works, but nobody involved may attempt or assist the ritual again for a year and a day. (Doing so results in an automatic failure)
81-90: A random other ritual of the same level and color occurs instead.
91-95: No effect, other than a strangely unsettling feeling coming over the area.
96-100: The ritual works, but the caster incurs a Karmic Debt as if they had used a witch's curse.

The GM may select which 6th-9th level spells are available as rituals in his game. My personal list:

6th: Animal Summoning III, Animate Object, Anti-Animal Ward, Anti-Magic Shell [White], Conjuration of Animals, Control Weather, Death Spell [Black], Disintegrate [Black], Extension III, Find the Path, Geas, Invisible Stalker [Black], Legend Lore, Monster Summoning IV [Black], Move Earth, Reincarnation**, Stone to Flesh [White], Word of Recall

7th: Aerial Servant [Black], Astral Spell**, Conjuration of Demons [Black], Creeping Doom [Black] Earthquake, Fire Storm, Holy Word [White], Limited Wish, Mass Invisibility, Monster Summoning V [Black], Phase Door, Restoration** Reverse Gravity, Simulacrum, Symbol, Water Walk

8th: Clone, Mass Charm, Summoning Monster VI [Black], Permanency, Polymorph Object

9th: Gate, Meteor Swarm [Black], Monster Summoning VII [Black], Prismatic Sphere [Black], Shape Change, Time Stop, Wish

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