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 Legends of the Sky - Six and One 
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
"Sure."

> To THE LIBRARY!


Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:44 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
"Sure."

> To THE LIBRARY!

The two of you head to the academy and you guide Leon to the library.
The room is quite familiar to you, having spent a fair share of time studying during your time at the academy. Not a multi-story grand library cut from marble blocks like some big cities have, just a wide and long single room filled with a half dozen large bookcases that stretch the length of the room and run up to the ceiling, and an array of long wooden tables with chairs.
The library covers a wide variety of subjects, owing to the wide variety of necessary skills for adventurers, but the collection of magic related books still makes up an entire bookcase's worth.
So, where to start?


Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:53 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
Look for books with the following topics -

> Construction and workings of magic machines

> Autonomous spell creation and binding

> mana polarization


Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:03 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
Look for books with the following topics -

> Construction and workings of magic machines

> Autonomous spell creation and binding

> Mana polarization

With some help from the librarian, you gather up a fair collection of books.

Two on magic equipment, one a general overview and one on the sort of techniques used for creating them.
One on magic machinery, a general overview.
Three on spell structure and formation, and how spells are cast in general. Nothing specifically for automating spell creation though.
You didn't find anything dedicated solely to mana polarization, but there was a hefty tome on the nature of mana with a good chapter on polarization.


Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:18 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
> Start with the mana book. What chapters are there? What's the general Index of Mana Topics look like?


Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:20 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
> Start with the mana book. What chapters are there? What's the general Index of Mana Topics look like?

You take a look into the index again, looking for more than just polarization. Skipping past the author's note and introduction and the like, there's...
1. What Is Mana
2. The Role of Mana in the World
3. The Source of Mana
4. Mana Dynamics
5. Mana Constructs - Spells, Souls, and more
6. Making Use of Mana - Mana plane
7. Making Use of Mana - Physical plane
8. Mana Polarization


Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:40 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
> POWER READ THE WHOLE BOOK


Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:42 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
> POWER READ THE WHOLE BOOK

You feel a higher power scowl at you, but continue with your reading anyway.

1. What Is Mana
The existence known as mana is like nothing else in our world, most owing to the fact that it is not a part of our world. Mana resides within another plane of existence, best described as a "half step to the side" from our own. It can interact gently with our world on its own, and more intensely with some help.
Mana itself is, most simply, an enigmatic substance somewhere between matter and energy. It has form and 'mass', yet also creates motion and life. It can be hardened and interacted with, touched and stored and moved, all like matter. It can be converted to motion, light, heat, or electricity, or used to counteract them equally, all with but a nudge into our material plane.
Within the mana plane, it functions most closely as matter, existing and floating and interacting as matter does in our world. When crossing over to our plane, it is almost always converted to some form of energy, giving birth to the collective phenomena known as magic. Lastly, mana can cross over halfway, doing a gentle interaction with our world and binding to some of our matter, without crossing over entirely and becoming energy. This forms a magic material, giving it properties that no single material in either plane would have.


2. The Role of Mana in the World
Our world is intimately connected with mana, in the same way as it is the sun, or the rain or the wind. Being everywhere, it influences every aspect of our world; from the islands to the skies to people and creatures, even to natural phenomena, all feel the touch of mana. Gentle interaction and magic material formation occur naturally over time to any creature with a soul, or where any dense bit of mana lingers where matter occupies the same space. With this, many creatures grow up in tune with mana, making it integral part of themselves through a core in monsters, or body strengthening in beasts. In intelligent magic-wielding races, this can manifest in the same strengthening as beasts, or a conscious control and grasp of magic in the form of spellcasting.
The world too lives and breathes with mana, with certain polarizations of mana cause effects on the land when they linger; ice mana causes snow and tundra, fire mana causing deserts and volcanoes, air causing strong winds, water forming lakes, and so on. Even without a soul to help the mana cross over, some is always gradually diffusing into our world, and in high concentrations this causes the dramatic effects listed. Creatures learn to live with these effects, usually by making use of the high ambient mana, and thus the circle of life continues.


3. The Source of Mana
While the precise nature of mana's origin is a mystery, what is known for certain is that it bubbles up slowly from the Abyss below. While it is an unforgiving life-taking void, it also provides our world with the energy to keep alive.
The effect is for the most part slow, a constant trickle upwards all across the sky. From time to time, larger gusts or bursts billow forth, or dead zones appear where mana falls back down into the abyss more than floats up. It is rather like the winds of our own sky in the way it flows and ripples, sinks and gathers.


4. Mana Dynamics
To flow like this, mana must interact with something. Specifically, itself.
Ambient mana can most easily be visualized as air. Flowing, floating, sometimes blowing, but overall free and disparate. The abyss pushes mana up, and it floats in the mana plane around the sky.
Mana has three important changes it can undergo that drastically alter this airy dynamic. The first is to cross over into our world, becoming energy. The second is to bind to our world, forming magic materials.
The third and final is to stay in its own world while being fixed and hardened. This converts the mana from an airy free flowing substance into one that is solid and static, able to hold its shape against the ordinary currents of ambient mana. This basic process forms the underpinnings of almost every advanced technique, construction, and existence involving mana in the sky.


5. Mana Constructs - Spells, Souls, and more
All substantial things to interact with mana are formed from hardened mana. Souls, spells, willpower, and even purely magic constructions are all created from mana that has been hardened into specific forms and shapes.
First and most important, the soul. The other half of almost all living beings' minds, and our direct connection to the mana plane and the world of magic. It is through the soul that all things interact with mana, using structures and 'organs' in the soul to harden mana, forming more structures. This includes the creation of spells, or willpower.
Both spells and willpower function the same, just going through different mental pathways to reach the end result. To make a spell, the soul hardens mana in a certain series of shapes, most easily visualized as a twisting and turning pipe. The pipe is formed so that it bends and twists mana as it is pushed through, causing it to take on certain properties before crossing over into our plane. When it then crosses over, the properties it gains cause it to convert to certain types of energy, in certain patterns.
This is how we achieve specific magical effects, through specifying the turns and bends in the pipes we make.
Similarly, magic materials with a flow effect are like a simpler, naturally forming twist or turn, just a single simple piece of pipe that causes a single simple effect, with a durable pipe.


6. Making Use of Mana - Mana plane
7. Making Use of Mana - Physical plane
You skim through these bits, as they're mostly just talking excitedly about minutia of the twists and bends. Good reference maybe, but very dry reading.

8. Mana Polarization
The last subject is the most pronounced of the properties mana can gain, elemental polarization. Mana tends to be prejudiced towards producing one variety of energy or another when it crosses over into our world, causing specific effects instead of simply random bursts of noise, heat, and light. Elemental spells manipulate this affinity, with the bends pushing mana more towards the desired effect. By using mana already tuned towards the effect, the spell itself can push further, causing a greater power when the mana finally crosses over to our world.
Likewise, starting with mana tinted a different affinity can provide side effects, weaken the effect of the spell, or even if it is sufficiently polarized, damage the spell itself and cause a misfire. The air, water, and earth elements are part of a triad, with none being inherently opposed to another but all being unable to coexist since they operate on a similar plane. Fire and ice, and light and dark conversely are inherently unable to coexist, with the energy of one canceling the energy of its opposite. Electricity is the only elemental polarity on its own, able to mix with any others without major ill effect.
Also noteworthy is the special effect of dark mana and light mana. Dark, in addition to being tuned to decrease light, when lacking in enough light to fully consume the mana can also start backsurging and breaking down non-dark mana, turning it to raw ambient mana. This makes it the polarity of choice for anti-magic.
And as can be expected, Light mana behaves the opposite way, with it backsurging and strengthening existing mana forms aside from light if the area becomes too saturated.


And with that, you finish the book.


Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:02 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
> Neat.

Read the general overview on magic machinery.


Wed Feb 13, 2019 6:21 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
> Neat.

Read the general overview on magic machinery.

You dig into the magic machinery book now. It covers some of the same ground that the book on mana did, going over how magic materials work and how magic machinery consists of both magic materials and hardened mana. This book mostly seems to be written about larger or more permanent magic machinery, like ones installed in buildings or ships. Smaller more portable things are considered equipment. The general practice is to only use magic materials when interacting with our world, and any connective wiring or logic-controlling components should be made in the mana plane where they are out of the way. It does specify to put up shielding for the mana plane components if needed in big bold letters, apparently it's a common mistake to not protect components in places with turbulent mana which can lead to deterioration of the machinery.
Complex machinery can get very large, but the components can also be made very compact. This can lead to machines that in our world are just a small box in one room, but on the other plane stretch out across multiple rooms' worth of space. Souls and mana constructions usually deflect around each other, but it still recommends to keep machinery away from where people or stray mana will be. Hardened mana, despite its name, is kind of flexible, and unless the mana is especially hardened it can squeeze or distort a fair amount and still bounce back to normal. This doesn't affect the "twists and bends" of the mana that causes effects when it transitions to our world, since those are more qualitative than actual shapes. Still best practice to not run mana wires right across a hallway, to be safe.

Near the end it goes over some simple designs for magic machinery, like a lightbulb circuit, a heater, a chiller. Admittedly, those seem to mostly be variations on the same design; a power source connected to a switch connected to an action element.


Mon Feb 18, 2019 12:38 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
> Magic equipment general overview, and then magic equipment construction


Mon Feb 18, 2019 11:22 pm
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
> Magic equipment general overview, and then magic equipment construction

You take up the magic equipment book, while Leon looks into one on spell structure.

Magic equipment isn't dissimilar to machinery, with a few key divergences.
First and most obvious, it has to be portable. Compact and lightweight are big requirements for any equipment, anything too big or heavy to carry with you in the field just isn't useful for an adventurer.
Second, they have to be durable. Considering a lot of magic equipment takes the form of weapons or armor, this should be obvious.
Third, they tend to be easy to use. This one is less a tenant and more a trend. An easy to use weapon or tool is more able to be wielded in battle or an emergency. Thus, magic equipment tends to keep things simple, with just one effect or several complimentary effects that can be used simultaneously.

The bulk of magic equipment, unlike machinery, is constructed in our plane, using magic materials or even plain old non-magical materials. While mana has the upsides of being easily manipulated and accessible without physical matter in the way, these traits become negatives in battle and make for fragile equipment. Physical matter by comparison is much sturdier, especially when fortified as a bound magic material.
For magical effects, the combination of simplicity, durability, and compactness can also be found in monster materials like cores. The core is basically a spell or series of spells tied to a sturdy magic material body, in a simple and inflexible but very effective and efficient form. Thus, cores and partial cores make for ideal components in magical equipment, fitting all the general requirements.
Flow materials also see use in equipment, most commonly in weapons. Fangs and claws from beasts tend to be made of flow materials that increase cutting or piercing power and durability, making them perfect for blades. More defensive flow materials are rarer, since bound materials tend to take their place with sheer durability, but there are beasts with flow materials that make for good armor, and almost all high level magic armor will make use of those in some way.

Weapons and armor get their mana usually directly from the user supplying it, with some having dedicated mana storage systems. Equipment usually has some kind of port or inlet that makes contact with the user, allowing them to provide mana at will.
Huh. That's odd. You don't remember hearing that will users could manipulate mana. Ah wait, here it is.
It's apparently a common skill among will users to be able to just release mana directly, without converting it to a magical effect. Unlike most willpower, this will drain entirely from their internal mana stores, whereas regular willpower absorbs atmospheric mana and uses that for the most part to fuel their effects. Unfortunately, will users can't do this in reverse to draw mana back into themselves, not from a mana storage stone or from atmospheric mana. So, they have to learn how to spend their mana carefully while using magic equipment lest they run out and are unable to even use their normal willpower.

Ok, that's the magic equipment overview book. Construction...
Ah. This seems more like an educational guide and reference, a lot of practical methods and patterns again, along with a decent sized index of what effects can be sourced from what kinds of monsters or beasts. You wonder how up to date it is.
Hm... Oh, almost all magic smiths are mages. Will users can't manipulate mana directly in the kind of ways you need to dissect cores and shape magic materials. They make for great regular smiths, but if you need to take a fireball component out of a monster core intact, you need a mage. Seems like it uses a similar skillset as spellcrafting does, fine mana manipulation and fiddling with parts in the mana plane.


Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:50 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
> Good thing I'm a mage!

In the construction book, try to find something about imbuing spells on to solidified mana.


Fri Feb 22, 2019 6:08 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
CaveCricket48 wrote:
> Good thing I'm a mage!

In the construction book, try to find something about imbuing spells on to solidified mana.

Flipping through the book on equipment construction, you find... not much.
It doesn't say anything about attaching spells. There are sections about using manually hardened mana and components, rather than monster parts, in equipment construction, but that's more of as connective material than as the main meat of the equipment.
It does mention that proper care must be taken when hardening mana to form these connective parts, because if not enough time is taken then the mana won't be "stable" enough and will come undone over time. High skill can do it faster, but it still takes time to make hardened mana that will persist indefinitely.
Considering spells are usually formed within the span of a few seconds, you suppose they would not make for good equipment construction. Though, you could form a spell and then spend some time reinforcing it so it would stick around. It sounds like the main factor is just adding more mana and spending enough time on it.


Sun Feb 24, 2019 3:02 am
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Post Re: Legends of the Sky - Six and One
"Hey Leon, how do you actually like, attach spells to things."


Sun Feb 24, 2019 7:06 pm
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