Magic is an extremely powerful force, the manipulation of which is carefully studied, frequently learned, but it is never fully mastered. Enchantments exude an aura that can be sensed by many, but years of training are required to properly exploit the Mana that pervades our world.
Some scholars use natural manifestations to explain the workings of the universe. In a common archetype, the physical world is likened to the sky while the ethereal realm of magic is set as the ocean. If we follow this line of thought, spells are much like the turbulence that occurs where the two interact with each other. During the Sin War, Demon and Angel alike wrought powerful magicks that threatened to tear the fabric of reality apart. The physical and magical realms began to blur and merge, which, in our archetype, would be the equivalent of a fierce hurricane.f
The Forces of Order sought to preserve our reality by limiting the power of mortal man. As a consequence, only the strongest wills can harness more than the most basic of magical effects. Even then, much energy is lost in the transition of power between the two Realms. As a practitioner of the arcane arts grows more knowledgeable he is able to create these effects with greater efficiency, resulting in spells that are more potent, have more endurance and drain less Mana in their casting.
"Either slain thou shalt gain heaven, or conquering thou shalt enjoy the earth.
Therefore arise, son of Kunti, unto battle, making a firm resolve.
Holding pleasure and pain alike, gain and loss, victory and defeat, then gird thyself for battle: thus thou shalt not get evil."
- The Bhagavad Gita
"Praktykowanie tych sztuk to bycie Potępionym.
Mistrzostwo w nich to bycie Zwycięzcą..."
The true essence of Fire lies at the edge of Energy and Matter. It is, therefore, a fairly simple matter to shape Mana into a magical flame. Controlling a bolt of this fire as it flies towards its target is another matter entirely. As experience and knowledge with this spell grows, both the intensity of the flame and the speed of the bolt can be increased with the caster feeling less exertion.
Inferno sacrifices the mobility of a Firebolt for pure damaging power. Rather than attempting to control the path and cohesiveness of a single bolt, the caster conjures forth an individual, focused stream of flame. Although it dissipates beyond more than a few paces, with a greater understanding of the forces at work the stream of fire can not only be extended a significant amount, but also can be maintained for a few moments more. The heat of an Inferno is more intense than that of a Firebolt as more Mana is being converted into essential energy.
Wall of Fire
Magical fire feeds upon no earthly source, being fueled instead by the mystic energies known as Mana. While the heat of conjured flames may cause normal matter to combust and burn on its own, the flames themselves will burn as long they have Mana to draw upon. By carefully controlling the flow of Mana to a magical fire, its life-span can be extended well beyond that of a Firebolt or an Inferno. The Horadrim were skilled enough to create torches that burn with an eternal flame, but those abilities have been long lost. With this spell, the caster creates a wall of eldritch flame that will burn until the Mana in that area has been exhausted. As knowledge of this spell increases, the rate at which Mana must be consumed can be better controlled and the Wall of Fire can be made to burn longer.
The true essence of Electromagnetism exists on the threshold of the Ethereal and the Physical Realms. While it is very efficient to transform Mana into electrical energy, it is extremely difficult to control. This spell calls into being multiple pockets of lightning which seem to have a will of their own. The caster is able to shield himself from the effects of these charges, but any creature – friend or foe – may be struck. Greater understanding of this spell allows more of these Charged Bolts to be formed, and their existence will be maintained for a longer period of time. The physical toll on the caster, however, increases as well, requiring more Mana to be spent.
The caster of this spell seeks to control the discharge of electrical energy by focusing it into a single stream of Lightning. The effects of channeling this powerful force of nature onto an unprotected creature are awesome indeed. With experience, these bolts of lightning may be maintained for a longer period of time while requiring less Mana to be used.
The Flash spell was created to fight the servants of Baal, whose minions prefer to surround their enemies and attack from all sides simultaneously. To properly form most incantations, the caster must be able to concentrate long enough to complete the necessary invocations and gestures. With this spell, the caster draws in as much Mana as possible as quickly as possible from the surrounding area and concentrates it into a single point within his own body. This Mana is then released in a single burst of raw energy that dissipates very rapidly – and very violently. While this spell is usable only in close combat, it is extremely potent and will strike creatures on all sides of the caster.
"When all magic fails, rely on three feet of steel and a strong arm..."
While the Horadrim were the greatest mortal spell casters ever known, not all of the followers of the Light were as proficient in magic as they were. During the quest to bind Mephisto, common soldiers were hard pressed to combat the seemingly endless tides of the undead that guarded the First Brother. During this time, Cathan, a devout priest who was also a fierce warrior, found that by invoking the powers of the High Heavens and then infusing them with the essence of Fire, a bolt of great speed and intensity could be created and used by those otherwise untrained in the use of magic. This Holy Bolt harms only the undead, making it far safer to use while on a chaotic battlefield.
The art of self healing is an invaluable ability, and it is for this reason that this spell has been preserved throughout the ages. When cast, Mana courses through the body, instantly knitting broken bone, replacing torn tissue and reducing the effects of shock and fatigue. With time, this spell can be developed to the point that it can instantly restore even those on the brink of death. The ability to heal others is much rarer, and those that can do so are greatly respected.
During the assault upon Mephisto’s Fortress of Bone, the army led by the Horadrim was nearly overwhelmed by the legions of the damned. As soon as one of the crusaders was slain in combat, his body would rise again as an undead warrior to fight against his former companions. On the eve of what was to be the final attack upon the Fortress, a mysterious figure in white appeared before the Council of the Horadrim. This apparition revealed to them the secret of piercing the barrier between Life and Death. By Resurrecting the slain soldiers, they could be saved from eternal corruption.f
Those present at the Council swore an oath never to use this ability once the battle was over, but somehow the secret escaped. This spell has the power to bring a dead soul back to the physical world, but it must be performed at the site of the person's death.
Any object imbued with magic exhibits an aura that is easily noticed. To determine the exact nature of this enchantment, however, requires intense study and an extensive knowledge of arcane materials and symbols. While none have mastered the ability to memorize a spell of this magnitude, the Vizjerei have developed a means for the untrained to discover the secrets of an ensorcelled object by using a rare crystal that is extremely sensitive to magical auras. This sensitivity makes it very fragile, however and the crystal will shatter if it is brought too close to an enchanted item. The very act of Identifying such an object also destroys the crystal. Scrolls and staves have been crafted that can be used to Identify magical auras. By using special inks and dyes that contain tiny grains of these crystals, the stability of the crystal is maintained until it is used to examine the enchanted object.
The Horadrim constructed numerous magical gateways between the mighty fortresses so that they could quickly concentrate their defenses against any incursion by the Demons. With but a thought, the Crusaders of the Light could transport themselves to predetermined destinations many leagues apart. Although the secret of creating these gateways has been long lost, it is still possible to use the pathways that are already in place. A Portal opened by means of this spell will always take the caster to the location of the nearest gate and remain open long enough to bring the caster back to his point of origin. The Church of Tristram is built upon the remains of a Horadrim monastery, and it is quite probable that a gateway lies nearby.
This versatile spell is derived from a training exercise that was used by the Horadrim. Once they reached a certain point in their training, acolytes were bound and locked in a cell, with the key to the door lying on the floor in front of them. The student had to unlock and open the door without being able to physically move. Through intense concentration and fine control, the acolyte could manipulate the key as if it was held by an invisible hand. Those that were able to open the cell door were allowed to proceed to the next level of training. There is some speculation as to the fate of those unfortunates that lacked the magical prowess to escape. Today, this spell serves as a reminder that what was once a simple mental exercise for the Horadrim is now a difficult spell known by few sorcerers. Telekinesis could prove very useful in the labyrinth, as there are many trapped doors and chests that could be safely opened from a distance. By exerting greater force, at a cost in fine control, creatures can also be pushed away from the caster.
As the eternal struggle between the forces of Light and Darkness rages on, all of the powers in the universe bend and twist in the storm of their conflict. The realms of the physical plane warp and merge with the planes of the ethereal, and chaos grows stronger while magical essence seeps into every corner of reality. In the past, those who studied the arts of magic and wielded the forces of the arcane were capable of learning and retaining only four pages of spells, and this only through tremendous difficulty and long hours of study. Now, as more spells and sources of Mana are created or unearthed from ancient places of power, many magic users have found that they can obtain and remember a fifth page.
In ancient times the Horadrim built many magical gateways, and though the secret of their construction is long lost, many uses and manipulations of these portals have evolved over the centuries. Akin to the spell of Town Portal is the spell of Warp, though far less versatile as a means of exact teleportation between two specific destinations. Rather, Warp sends the caster on a one way trip to nearest exit from a place. Immediately thereafter the portal is closed and dissipated, leaving the traveller with only conventional means with which to return to the point of casting. Limited as a means of travel, this spell can, however, prove to be extremely useful in finding an exit when the caster is lost or besieged in a dark and dangerous place such as a dungeon or a cave. Unfortunately, the forces drawn upon by the Warp spell make no distinction between types of exits, since they merely focus their energies on the nearest at hand. As often as not, the caster is sent to an exit downward, which almost always leads to even greater peril.
Over the ages, many mystical cultures have delved into the nature of matter and energy while exploring the manifestations of magic. Out of this research came the ability to attain heightened perceptions, and, for those individuals of appropriate mental and spiritual discipline, this ability has proven to be a tremendous asset. For instance, the Monks of the Brotherhood of the Bough learned to focus their perceptions and concentration to such an extent that they could clearly see almost any visible object, no matter how distant, camouflaged or obscured. The Vizjerei studied and learned from these people, and managed to bend the arcane forces into spells that could mimic their fine mental disciplines. Thus magic users can include in their arcane arsenal the spell of Search, which, when invoked, makes clear to the caster all items and objects lying about. This spell has often proved to be invaluable to the adventurer wandering through dark, cluttered spaces seeking treasure.
By nature, magic users are usually not gifted in physical skills such as hand-to-hand combat, focusing rather on mental discipline in order to further their understanding and control of mystic powers. However, even the most adept of mages often find themselves in great physical danger while exploring savage places searching for arcane knowledge.
To compensate for this vulnerability, the Vizjerei developed a form of telekinetic magic that bends the force of a physical attack back onto the attacker. Aided by this reflective spell, even the meagre melee combat skills of a mage can prove to be quite effective. An aggressive creature becomes the victim of not only the mage's blows, but also of its own.
The use and control of the magical forces of Mana have many manifestations, almost all of which involve channelling this ethereal energy into concentrated and focused forms, such as the many spells related to Fire or Lightning. However, as the Horadrim experimented and mastered the arcane powers, they discovered that nearly any force could be controlled and reshaped or re-oriented, including mental and bodily energy.
With this understanding, they soon created spells to influence the thoughts and actions of other creatures. The most aggressive of these magics caused a target to gain a burst of great strength and go mad with rage. Frenzied with blood lust, the creature willingly attacks any nearby living being, whether friend or foe. Entities with natural evil intent and weak minds tended to fall under this spell easily, and the Horadrim had great success using this maddening incantation to incite Demons and other foul creatures of blackness to blindly attack one another during the heat of combat. A warning to novices seeking to use this spell: the fury of an affected creature knows no bounds, and if not careful or safely distant, the caster of this spell may very well end up being the target of the berserk creature's rage./p>
Wall of Lightning
The electrical energy of Lightning, when channelled by an able magic user, is a deadly and powerful weapon. Shaping this dramatic force of nature into the form of a barrier wall requires great concentration, but can be used as an extremely effective defence against an onslaught of murderous foes. As understanding and control of this spell grows, the endurance of the wall can be increased, providing the caster with longer periods of protection.
UHarnessing the forces of Mana and converting their energy into the form of Fire has been a skill long practised by even the most inexperienced of magic users. Absolute control and manipulation of magical Fire is another matter entirely, and only the most learned of the great mages have attained such ability. Of the many spells that channel flame into the form of a weapon, the most effective, perhaps, is Immolation. Radiating outwards from the caster, multitudes of Fireballs tear through the air, forming a circular swath of destruction as they explode on impact and burn any creatures in their path.