Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Sorcery: Solidify

Hey kid, want some "boo"-tiful polish? ;)
I can't think of anything so, here we are, working out the solidify spell, an ability by which an insubstantial caster may become substantial. Should be simple, so let's figure it out.

Target Self

Solidify is on p. 151 of GURPS Magic. It can be used either by a ghost or spirit to become tangible or by a magic user to force a spirit to become tangible, and it lasts for one minute. This is almost like two separate abilities, so let's stat them separately. First the version to afflict upon oneself gives the disadvantage of not being insubstantial.

Solidify (-15%): No Insubstantiality(Sorcery -15%) [-68]

Hooray... that seems kinda unbalanced. It's purely a discount. Going with a slightly different approach, if we consider the Power-Ups approach of making an advantage out of an enhancement, we find "switchable" is a +10% enhancement, or 8 points in the case of Insubstantiality. This version is:

Solidify (-15%): Add Switchable to Insubstantiality(Sorcery -15%) [7]

That seems a bit more fair. Spending FP to turn it on has an automatic built in time limit of 1 minute, so for this version, we are done.

Target Others

For the version to cast on other people, let's use the custom "No Insubstantiality" disadvantage we made up which cost the negative value of Insubtantiality, but give it a 10% discount for magical, making it [-72] We can now make it an affliction.

Solidify Other(+93%): Affliction(ST, Sorcery -15%; Disadvantage, No Insubstantiality, +8%; Malediction 1, +80%; Based on different Attribute, ST, +20%; Fixed Duration, 3 minutes, +0%) [20]

Optionally, you could make it based on IQ for the same cost. The spirit has a quick contest with the caster, and if it fails, it becomes substantial for 3 minutes.

Other Notes

The second version is probably more versatile because it could work on oneself as well. Surprised I ran into a hiccup on this spell that required more thought than usual. Perhaps an insubstantial caster could learn the ability in a leveled or "improved" way if they want to scrimp on points early on. The second spell might make sense in a different power modifier as well, and if going with the pretty standard -10% for a lot of powers, its cost is unchanged. Could be useful for the type of characters that perform exorcism violently... or need to do a seance.

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