Friday, August 29, 2014

Revised GURPS Magic: Merging Instant spells

GURPS Magic has a number of spells I prefer to merge into each other, like Flesh to Stone and Stone to Flesh. One group of those are the "Instant" versions of spells. They are:

Instant Restoration

Instant Regeneration

Instant Neutralize Poison

Those aren't really necessary, and serve only to clutter up spell lists and make casters more costly. They make perfect sense as leveled versions of each other, even if you have different prereqs to unlock to more powerful version!

So I merged them with the following approach:

- Keep the spell difficult of the base spell (so Neutralize Poison stays Hard)

- Change the prerequisites to just the PI level needed to cast the spell, and for instant use, the PI level needed for that.

- leave the costs the same.

For example:
Neutralize Poison

As written, except:

Cost: 5. For 8 energy, it may be cast instantly; no Poisons roll is needed, however, only one try per day!
Prerequisites: Power Investiture 3.

I also did Restoration and Regeneration, but the pattern should be clear.

It's actually easier to just ignore the layered prereqs and let anyone who can cast the base spell cast the higher-powered Instant version. In my experience the high cost of the Instant version is sufficient barrier to casting them! If you like the idea that different PI lets you cast the spell at different levels, simply add "Power Investiture 4 is needed to attempt an instant neutralization" to the end of the prereqs.

The weirdness is costs is one of those things - like Flight and Hawk Flight. But whatever, I'm content to leave it for now.

Admin note: Why so many of these recently? Basically because I'm writing something and doing lots of lesson planning, and these are easy things for me to do on breaks that makes them productive. I grab a spell, fix it, and then (naturally) post about it here. Much less time than taking pictures of my minis, writing up rules, or reading for reviews.


  1. "Mergings" of inverse spells are something I'd definitely favor, though I might prefer to do so in a way that would somehow give a "discount" to those specifically wanting to learn only one version of the spell. I might also prefer to keep them separate for item-enchanting purposes.

    1. That's probably easily done - use the "plain" version magic item cost for items that can't do Instant, and the Instant costs for ones that can.

      For a specialized version, perhaps make them a step easier? Hard instead of Very Hard? For Neutralize Poison, I'm not sure anyone really wants to only have the slow version - it's vastly less useful.

  2. This is, off topic but I am curious about your thoughts on using ritual path magic in DF. GURPS Magic seems to need, more, than a, little tweakingso I am curious about what you would do for RPM.

    1. I haven't played with RPM at all yet - not a single session. I haven't even read the whole RPM book yet. So I can't really give a useful opinion in it.


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