[Regional Sorcery] Ruddlestone

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[Regional Sorcery] Ruddlestone

Post by Skyrock » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:40 pm

You cannot take your Spell Book with you, as the sorcerers of Analand cannot risk its falling into the wrong hands of Kakhabad"
- Sorcery! Introduction, "Equipment and Provisions"

"Each country's sorcery is one of its most closely guarded secrets."
- Sorcery! 3: The Seven Serpents, entry #8

One idea I always liked is the notion that all the nations of the Old World have their own kind of sorcery they keep secret from outsiders - a sorcery that reflects the needs, culture and history of the country.

This would be the following:
- Brice
- Femphrey
- Gallantaria
- Lendleland
- Mauristatia
- Ruddlestone

(I will skip Analand as it is already covered by the main rules. Kakhabad will be skipped as it isn't really an unified nation.)

What this will be for now is just a brainstorming to get a basic grip on the concept of the individual sorceries, one thread at a time. Once all of the Old World is covered by a concept, I'll see what concrete stuff can be come up with.

Don't sweat overlap in spells, especially very basic ones. Ideas like the wheel or picking up a stick to whack someone have developed simultanously all around the world. Likewise, zapping someone with a lightning bolt is a very basic idea that is likely to be similarly popular.

Time to bring that phase to an end with...


The country
Ruddlestone is a land that is surrounded by enemies. To the west, Brice is always up to conquer something. To the south, the Archmage of Mampang towers above Kakhabad. And while there aren't necessarily bad things coming from isolated Mauristatia, it would be news if anything good would come from a land of vampire lords and necromancer kings.

The dominating faction of Ruddlestone is a militaristic religious one. What is particularly interesting about that is that there are loads of warrior-priests, and that the rulers are always looking for more. What this means is that the church will always look to soak up any and all magical talent to train it to become a priest.

The implication of that is is that sorcery has to compete with the ruling warrior-priests for pupils.
Co-existence is hardly thinkable, as magical talent is rare, and as someone who becomes a sorcerer can't become a priest anymore. Rather, sorcery is forced to go underground and snatch talent where the church isn't. As the church especially focuses on warrior-priests, that means talent that hasn't much martial prowess. Children don't cut it, as they will eventually grow up and thus are of interest to the church. The elderly might be a better guess, but even if they can grow up undetected, it might be too late for them to gain any significant magical power.

No, the only significant pool of talent that is open to sorcerers are women. Along with its opposition to the dominating church and its undeground status, that means that Ruddlestonish sorcery is essentially witchcraft. Which fits very, very neatly into the setting presented by "Spellbreaker".

The spells of Ruddlestone
Obviously, the witches of Ruddlestone focus a lot on powers traditionally associated with witches: Flight, curses, potion-brewing, summoning demons or calling hail from the sky, just to name a few.

As they have to work their magic in secret, spells are rarely flashy - and when they are, they better leave no witnesses!

There are few direct combat spells - being outgunned and outnumbered, and generally recruited from those not fit to fight, the witches have to avoid going toe-to-toe. They prefer to kill indirectly, as by creating accidents, sending demons or striking someone with a wasting disease.

The components of Ruddlestone
Obviously, flight is going to require a broomstick. Other traditional implements are cauldrons, daggers, herbs and cups.

Having to act clandestinely, other popular components are those that seem mundane. Decks of playing cards, tools or coins draw much less suspicion than dragon scales or rings of green metal.

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