[Blue Room GURPS: The Craig Roth Collection]Two Quick Magic Optional Rules

By S. John Ross, © 1997

Spell Ingredients

With this option in play, Ingredients (eye of newt, that kind of thing) provide Power, which is spent just like ordinary power that the mage provides.

An ingredient is purchased by Sphere and Power. "Sphere" means either a single spell or a whole college. If you have 10 power (10p) worth of Flesh to Stone ingredient, it may only be used for Flesh to Stone, and no other spell. If you have 10 power for Earth College, it can be used for any spell in the Earth College. All ingredients weigh 1 pound for every 100 power. One point of single-spell power costs $10; one point of Whole College power costs $50.

Ingredients must be readied before use. If you keep fewer than (IQ-5) types of ingredient in separate pouches, this is a simple Step and Ready maneuver. If you have more than (IQ-5) types of ingredient, or keep any number jumbled together in one big pouch, it takes 1d turns to find and ready an ingredient. Fast-Draw (Spell Ingredients) will make a standard draw instantaneous, or reduce the 1d roll to 1d-1. Eidetic Memory (either level) doubles the allowable ingredients for normal draw.

The precise nature of the ingredients (or "reagents") is up to you. You can have black acorns, otter's noses, ocelot's spleens, wolf nipple chips (get 'em while they're hot; they're lovely), and so on. The player MUST define what each ingredient he is carrying is.

Note, however, that the more powerful the spell, the less likely that an herbmonger/magic shop merchant/etc. will have it handy in quantity.


All spells are assumed to have some sort of side effect - a pretty trail of sparkles from caster to subject, a blue ray, a shimmering light for the Shield spell, or whatever. Some spells have only visual effects, some have only sounds; most have both. Spells with either sights or sounds already implied in the effect (Illusions, Missile Spells, and so on), are the only exceptions. The general nature of ANY visual effects varies with the mage; it's a side-effect of the "aura" of the wizard's personality. Some wizards might have spells that are all one color, or always heralded by electric crackling noises. It's up to every mage-player to describe, in general terms, the nature of the sounds and sights that accompanies his magic. Sensory side effects may be "muffled" for 1 point of spell power, when necessary for stealth reasons . . .

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