Marc Malloys Manuel To Modern Magic
"Look kid, so you have a bit of power, great, join the club. You should realise pretty soon that you aren't the biggest or the baddest thing out there, and all your powers might as well be peddles, for all the effect they have on some of things which go bump in the night. Its not all lost however, where we lack strength, we can make up for it in precision and control. Stick with what I tell you, and you'll do just fine. Trust me, this is science after all…"

Power-ups:

Pre-Ritual:

  • Tools: The more elaborate or ornate the tools used in the ritual the better. Each ritual has its own focus and theme, and so the tools used are important. Crappy tools with hinder any casting (-1/-2/-3 to pool), while good tools (+1/+2) or masterful tools (+3/+4/+5) are even better.
  • Location: Location is important to Ritual magic. While being in a place which is new to the feel of magic will not hinder you, places which know magic often seem to store and absorb magical energy, adding to effect. While a magical nexus point can grant power (+1/+2 depending), it doesn't need to be so drastic. Rooms which are devoted to ritual magic, or those who have seen a lot of it, gain a magical pool all on their own (+1)
  • Do your damned research!!: While you may know a spell from memory or can do it on the fly, its always better to research any ritual you are about to use. The magical realm is in constant flux, and each casting of a ritual is a little different, researching a ritual from your source of arcane knowledge will always help you stay on top of the game (+1/+2)
  • Rare materials can help!!: While all rituals have their tools and components, there exist a few precious metals which naturally help resonate magical energy. Orichalcum and Lunargent are two such metals, not naturally found, both can be formed from a mixture of gold or silver respectively with the "twilight" of the magical world which exists around us. Not much is needed, and a few gold looking trimmings on a cane or a nice silver ring is all that is needed to boost your power (+1). Each can be produced with a clever use of Alchemy! (External Alchemy 4)
  • Say it right: You are not a real magus, you are like a child's finger painting compared to the Mona Lisa of a true spell slinger. They wield power so purely and so innately that what we do can barely be considered magic at all, however, we are not wholly different. The real Magus use their own tongue, an ancient one, only known in it root forms. It can be learnt and spoken by just about anyone, however stressful the process may be. Learning this tongue however will grant you must better command of your powers (+2 - requires the "High Speech" Merit)

During Ritual:

  • The Circle: Circles are important to ritual magic, not sure why, you don't really need to know, probably something to do with focusing and binding the magical energies. In any case, circles are important. Even if a ritual does not normally require a circle, a well made one, with time and effort and resources, and really kick up a spells power (+1/+2)
  • Know the Ritual well: All rituals have little tweaks you can make to them in order to make them more powerful, never in a small but noticeable way (+1/+2/+3). This goes hand in hand with using proper tools and doing your research, but is in addition to them. Just learn how it all works, treat it like a science that allows for a bit of slack, and think of it like adding an extra layer of duck tape to strengthen an object.
  • Sympathetic trinkets: Ritual magic isn't about bending and reshaping reality to your will, maybe those True Magus I've read of can do that, we we're not like them, they are on a whole other level. Ritual magic is all about drawing and making a sympathetic connection between something big on a smaller scale, and channelling your will through it to make that connection strong. Then, what you do on the micro scale builds and effects those things on the marco scale, in the desired way. Think of all ritual magic like a vodoo doll, or, more expressly, the starting circuit on a Telsa Coil…. To this end, their are certain things you can use to make these connections stronger, and even force connections where it might otherwise be impossible. Unlike some of the other things mentioned in their guide, these sort of connection boosters are more loose in their definition but are all conceptually related, it sort of works like an ink-plot test. Think of the ritual's effect, then, what's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of this effect? 9 times out of 10, that first thought or image will be the key to adding more power, however, try kicking that image up by an order of magnitude for the best effect!! (+1) Even though you really shouldn't, if you want to kill someone with magic, add a symbolic noose or a gunpowder from a bullet you intended to shoot them with. Want to get lucky or influence fate? Use something that brought you luck! Dice you won a game with, those pocket aces from your poker game, a bible that stopped a bullet from entering your heart. If wielding primal forces if your bag, then add some primal forces! Set things on fire, have an electrical current flowing through you (not a strong one mind") and the job will be much quicker. If alchemy is your intent, either internal or external, do something symbolic - cutting your finger and adding your own blood for the internal, or pouring acid over the ritual items to the external. I could go on, but you get the idea by now I'm sure…

Other:

  • The elements: I've heard a rumour that nature (wild fires, lightning storms, hurricanes, etc) itself can be channelled to power big rituals, and I mean big rituals, stuff that might give those True Magus runs for their money. No sound information to go on just yet however… I'll update this at some point in time if I figure any more of it out.
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