... now with 35% more arrogance!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Curse of the Black Magician

In the post a few days back about distinguishing clerical magic from regular magic, I revisted the idea of the white magician or black magician, which is just a magic-user who happens to use the cleric spell list instead of the standard spell list. White magicians must make a piety check (reaction roll) any time they cast a reversed spell, and any time they cast certain spells like Raise Dead or Commune. On the worst possible reaction, the white magician falls from grace and becomes a black magician. Form that point on, the black magician can only cast the reversed forms of spells (Darkness, Cause Wounds, Cause Disease, Bestow Curse.)

Black magicians don't need to make reaction rolls when casting spells, which seems a little unfair. On the other hand, their spell list is fairly limited, and when using the casting times suggested in the recent post, they're pretty limited in what they can do. They're pretty much restricted to scrolls for magical attempts to influence combat, and their prepared spells are primarily useful only in deceitful situations or when cast on helpless victims. So maybe they don't need a limitation...

But I'd like to give them a small one, anyways. When a party containing a black magician encounters undead or demonic entities (or other chaotic supernaturals,) make a reaction roll. On a Very Bad result, the undead or demons attack the black magician specifically, with intent to drag him to Hell or make him one of the living dead, or otherwise give him his just desserts. It's not a common event, but it adds a little color to the black magicians, giving them a feeling of living on borrowed time.

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