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 Sorcery: Mana Manipulation

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PostSubject: Sorcery: Mana Manipulation   Fri Jul 02, 2010 4:13 pm

Nearly every sorcerer recognizes the flow of some sort of power: mana, sekhem, chi, vis or some other representation of magical potential. Most magicians learn to feel or describe the energies that course through them during the casting of spells. Some, however, learn to direct these power sources in order to reshape the fundamental mystic energy about them. Geomancy, ley line channeling, feng shui - all of these sense and redirect the power of raw magic energy into new directions and shapes.

Mana Manipulation is an esoteric Path, and few sorcerers would describe it in such abstract terms - rather, most see it as an exercise described by their specific magical style. A magician used to feng shui and chi kung, for instance, will channel chi energies with special mirrors or moxa burning. A sorcerer who relies on incantations and wands will use those tools to direct Mana and store it. Spirit-talkers and shamans may rely on elaborate designs to trap and hold energy or paintings that ward off negative energies.


System

Roll: Manipulation + Occult

Cost: 1 Willpower

Modifiers: -1 for areas of strong Mana (Nodes and the like)

Time: One turn per effect level

Duration: Varies


Instead of aspects, this Path offers certain feats that may be performed at each level.

* The sorcerer can sense Mana energies. In simple terms, a quick meditation or invocation allows the sorcerer to determine if an area or item is charged with power (Quintessence, Mana, vampire blood, what have you). With three or more successes, the sorcerer can tell if it has a specific Resonance - recognizing a sacred groove as a place holy to nature and growth or determining that some sort of stored Mana is actually flavored with a destructive, poisonous Resonance, for instance.

** While an initiate can sense magical energy in places or objects, a sorcerer with this level of Mana Manipulation can see the magical energy in and around creatures. The sorcerer's perceptions let him determine if someone is using magic and allowing him to see obstructed or occluded magical flows (like blocked chi energies or curses). The sorcerer can also make a rough estimate of the potential magical energy held by an individual, though this does not guarantee separating a supernatural creature from an otherwise normal human.

*** Skilled sorcerers can displace or alter the flow of Mana around an area. The sorcerer can briefly block a Mana flow (each success causes a Node or other wellspring of Mana to become dormant for a turn) or push it in a different direction (again, for one turn per success). The sorcerer can cause Mana to become trapped in a simple object, though a given object can only hold a single point of Mana through a brief spell of this sort.

**** Manipulation of personal Mana energies allows a sorcerer to store additional Mana (temporarily), draw from a place of power to fuel his magic or even disrupt a person's Mana flow to cause injury. The sorcerer can draw Mana out of a place of power; each success allows the sorcerer to channel one point of Mana (to the limit of the area's power), which must be used in the next turn. Striking at a person to destroy Mana allows the sorcerer to strip Mana from the individual's pool at a one-success-for-one-point rate; this can also discharge the power in other magical pools (like Gnosis) on a two-successes-per-point ratio. Mana Manipulation at this level can cause injury or healing by altering the flow of life energy through a subject, essentially promoting health or disease. (This has no immediate effect, but over time may cause degeneration or better health; long-term or powerful alterations are better performed with the Healing Path.)

***** The master of Mana can not only sense and redirect Mana, but can us Mana to infuse countermagic (creating a magical "shield" that allows him to add Mana to a countermagic dice pool), block another sorcerer's use of Mana (each success stops an opponent's point of Mana from empowering an effect) or even change the Resonance of Mana (turning poisoned Mana into neutral, "clean" energy that could be used with helpful spells or bending otherwise passive Mana to a more active, fiery Resonance for use with destructive magic), with successes dictating the level of change - one success would alter the Resonance slightly, three would cancel out a characteristic and five would reverse it.

****** A legendary sorcerer can briefly cause an area to become a nexus of Mana energy. With a spell of this level, the sorcerer creates a flow of Mana for a few moments, turning himself into a sort of magical magnet. Successes garnered on such a spell are split between duration (in turns) and power (in Mana per turn). The sorcerer or others present may channel this Mana normally. Doing so, however, can be very debilitating; such magic often has side effects or burns out the caster (score one level of bashing damage for each success rolled).

Rituals

Mana Manipulation rituals allow a sorcerer to extend his power over Mana to cover wide areas or long durations.

Infusion **

The sorcerer takes an otherwise normal potion or other consumable object and places some of his own Mana into it for later use. The successes scored determine how much Mana can go into the item. Energy usually "leaks" during this process; every two points of Mana spent by the sorcerer channel one point into the storage receptacle.

Shape Mana ***

With special mirrors, diagrams, carvings or the like, the sorcerer turns the flow of Mana in an area so that it changes direction and intent. The sorcerer could cause "bad" energies to become wholesome, alter a spell effect or turn a ley line so that it runs through his residence. The level of success guides the feat: With one success, the sorcerer could dissipate some unlucky energies so that a place does not attract evil spirits or ill fortune. With three successes, the sorcerer can channel joss so that a location has good fortune (lowering by one the difficulty of all commerce or practices of the area - a store would facilitate business, a hospital would encourage healing, and so on). With five successes, the sorcerer can reshape a magic effect already in the area to the limits of his own knowledge (turning, say, a ward so that it wards against a different creature type) or even cause a Node or other source of power to channel its energy to a location of his choosing. Mana reshaped in this form typically lasts until some force "snaps" it back to normal, though some places may require specific maintenance (yearly for simple effects like good luck, perhaps daily rituals for bending ley lines).
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