- Taken from the article on Zealandia RPG*
Notes on the mechanics of magic, the possibles, probables, and impossibles: Human beings were created as storage and transmission units of the raw energy the gods Boon and Swift expended during their several billion year stalematein which the universe was created. Through natural bodily processes, such as eating food or feeling the warmth of a fire or the sun, a person takes in energy which it then uses. A small percentage of this energy though, is stored inside a person which is transferred to their god through prayer, or whichever god a person prays to when they die. Only a small bit it tapped into through normal prayer, it is instantaneous release upon death, that’s why Swift left humans to war amongst themselves before Boon ever arrived on the scene. This energy has few extra special properties though, it can affect matter only as normal energy can. Eg. It can excite electrons causing electrical current, it can cause molecules to vibrate creating thermal energy, it can bestow directional kinetic energy causing matter to move, it could even transfer energy from one location to another. Theoretically, it could even be used to split an atom. (A theory proven by Darius) In regards to its special properties, it is energy that was borne of consciousness, therefore it can be controlled through human will. It is possible for this energy to directly affect the human mind (See Shielah’s mind control abilities and Lilithe’s mind reading abilities. Darius’ telepathy also falls under this, as does the insanity that demons often undergo). I have taken some liberties with certain abilities such as healing, where one does use heat to cauterize wounds, I’ve also used the explanation that guiding this energy with a benevolent will to the affected area causes natural healing to be accelerated, it doesn’t make a LOT of sense, but hey, it’s a fantasy universe, so fuck it. Usual magics like fire, ice, lightning, I’ve given a lot of thought to though. Fire magic: While casting fire magic, there is no line of flame, or flame bolt that shoots out from your character and hits a target. Primarily because there usually isn’t fuel in the air. Instead your character is shooting a concentrated beam of heat, or unconcentrated, depends on the attack I guess, and whatever it hits bursts into flame. You don’t actually need a spark to set things aflame, you can heat certain things up to a certain temperature (flash point) and it can burst into flame all on its own. I do take some liberties here as well because most things have a really high flash point, you have to heat them up so much that they become a vapour. Heat still kills but fire is fun to watch. Ice magic: Ice magic is pretty much the opposite of fire magic, instead of pumping something with thermal energy, you’re drawing the thermal energy of an object away from it, which brings its temperature down. To specifically make ice attacks, one must draw the moisture in the air together with kinetic energy while cooling that spot to condense it into shards of ice, then use kinetic energy to fire these things through your designated target. Or you can draw the moisture around your target and freeze them in place, whatever you want, the world is your magical oyster. Lightning magic: Really simple, you use your energy to give your target a charge, then give your magic the opposite charge, build up energy and then let it arc into that motherfucker. This does take a lot of power, Langdoncan’t do it at all. Unless of course he’s physically touching somebody (like restarting their heart) but for the most part, he tries to stay the hell away from physically engaging from the enemy, it’s too easy to die by doing that in his opinion. He does however, get his hands on a dwarven made bracer that has a thin retractable cable built into it. He's been known to attach said cable to his arrows and fire them into his target, giving him a conductive connection in which to shock his enemies. Kinetic energy attacks: Doesn’t really need an explanation. Magical defence: Now, everybody is chock full of this energy, some more than others, but it’s present in everybody. This energy naturally resists outside influences, especially if a person is very heavy into their prayer (which means they have a better connection with their internal energy) or is a trained mage, or just has a very high level of internal energy (Eg. Demons). That’s why you can’t simply freeze a person’s entire body, or just roast them alive in one go. It might be really easy to light somebody’s house on fire, then it’s pretty straightforward, but to light somebody directly on fire takes a lot more energy because you have to overcome a person’s natural defences. Langdon might be able to arc lightning into a tree, but he can’t arc lightning into a person, maybe from a short distance he could, but it would do so little damage and tire him out so much that he couldn’t be bothered. Carolon the other hand, she’s got the weight of Boon behind her magic, SHE can fuckin’ arc lightning into a dude from a half mile away and leave only a pair of charred boots behind. This also, would tire her out, but I say goddamn. Assassin skills are a strange thing, however, they still follow the rules…pretty much. I do tend to ignore the amount of energy it would actually take to do certain things, but c’mon folks, this is magic here, it’s not exactly a science. The assassin order trained by Boonishdon’t turn themselves invisible, they basically turn themselves into shadows, they do this by absorbing all of the energy from light as it strikes their body. They can in turn, use this energy for other means. While not reflecting light is pretty cool and makes you hard to see when it’s dark, you’d still look like a person shaped shadow, and seriously out of place. Through further training, more skilled assassins are able to absorb light from the area around themselves as well, effectively making a blanket of shadow whenever they need to. Although this process takes a lot of energy to start, once going, it sustains itself and can even gather more energy than it burns. Assassins that have mastered this and remain cloaked in shadow virtually all the time, and who are also especially powerful naturally, have the ability to partially phase themselves out of their dimension of existence and into another where time is moving faster. While between dimensions, the assassin’s perception of each dimension averages out, the faster dimension appears to be moving at an accelerated speed, but if she or he focuses on her or his original dimension, it appears to be moving much slower. This is how assassins appear to slow down time. For the most part, these two sets of skills are what they focus their magical pursuits on, they then rely on physical weapons as to not break their concentration. Especially while straddling two dimensions of existence, I don’t know exactly what would happen if your concentration slipped there, but it can’t be good. Wizards and paladinsare kind of nifty… Wizards and paladins are essentially the same thing in terms of how they operate. Paladins are basically super zealous warrior versions of wizards, but for some reason they don’t get along that well. I blame the paladins, but I’m biased. Wizards and paladins use their own internal energy (they need to have a lot to begin with) to create a kind of energy conduit that they extend directly to Boon. They basically use their own relatively minor bit of energy to pipe down a massive amount of energy directly from their god. How much they can handle is how much they can take. With training and practice one can slowly increase how much energy they can wield, whereas when you’re working with your own internal energy, it kind of caps out, there’s only so much a body can hold at a time. Many young wizards have died over doing it though. Paladin death from this is far less common. Swiftish priestsoperate very similar to mages, they pray really hard and find their own internal energy, mistake it for Swift, then pray harder to use it. Less effective than a mage who is very well trained and knows exactly what he’s doing. Or a wizard, they ain’t got shit on wizards. Demons though, are a toss up. They could be weak, they could be powerful, they could be sane, but they’re usually not. Demons are made by taking regular living things (usually humans or animals that are easy to train while not a demon) and then overloading them with energy. This is usually done by a large circle of priests working together to pump energy into this living being. If the person or animal survives, their natural energy reserves are extremely, extremely expanded, and their potential far exceeds any human ever born. Side effects may include but are not limited to: severe dementia, physical deformation, extremely violent outbursts, outright insanity, brain death, and regular death. The physical deformation part tends to occur during the actual transformation into demonhood. This deformation aspect has been experimented with and it is possible to actually merge two completely separate beings into one, it’s as if the body being channelled into becomes malleable. Though the odds of living through that project are pretty damn slim. Usually, if there is physical deformation, it’s the body trying to cope with the sudden unexpected surge of energy within it, there’s also no expected way for this to turn out other than the end result is usually larger. Often times there is little or no physical change. Other times you get Darius. Then again, sometimes it’s just in between, such as Darius’ father. Other neat facts about demons, notably the ones that don’t turn out right: If a demon is made and it isn’t mentally strong enough to handle all of that energy (because it’s consciousness based energy) as previously mentioned, it will drive the demon insane. When a demon goes insane, that doesn’t make the situation better, it becomes even less capable of handling all of that energy. This energy basically begins leaking out and infects other nearby living things. People are usually fine, for the bit of energy they are exposed to, they’re more than mentally equipped to deal with it. Animals not so much, wildlife is often driven insane by being in the presence of a demon that has lost its mind. That’s not to say that it can’t happen to humans because it has. Case in point, Crom the Valiant, driven insane by Sandra, later known as Ragenous AKA that really crazy bitch. I think for the most part that’s a pretty decent crash course for how magic works in this universe. If there are any serious questions or concerns, just remember, it’s just magic, it’s not real.