Black City – Runic Tradition

There are a surprising number of magic-users in my Black City campaign, given that I was expecting a boatload of Viking reavers. In the ACKS Heroic Companion, ceremonialists practice their art within a set of traditions, each representing a school or technique of invoking magical effects. Most Norse ceremonialists follow the runic tradition, which is described thusly:

Masters of magic sigils that contain eldritch power, using runes to see the future, heal the sick, and curse their enemies.

Historical inspirations include: Norse galdr-workers, Neopagan druids, Chinese and European geomancers.

I’ve made a custom Runeseer character class for this tradition, based partly on the Runemaker class from the HC – which I’ve renamed the Runemark. Some Norse Shamans also follow the runic tradition.

Hyperborea HR

Customized Spell List

I like the ease of a single Eldritch spell list in the HC, but there are particular spells and effects that I think should be more common in some traditions than others. Bane-Rune, for example, is a prime runic effect – but I don’t see a Runemark using Summon Ooze!

The following lists are the “common” effects in the runic tradition (at least for 1st- and 2nd-level spells). White magic spells are in normal font; grey magic is in grey italics; and black magic is bold black. The wolf-calling spells are really suited to runic casters, but wolves are not native to Thule. I’ve replaced these with wolverine-related spells.

(The formatting on these tables suck; I may go back later and make prettier versions in Excel. Also, I want to suggest possible forms for reusable trinkets – like a drinking horn for Cure Light Wounds, or an engraved sword for Sharpness. And I’m going to make an assumption that expendable trinkets will be in the form of runestones.)


First-Level Runic Spells

  1. Bane-Rune
  2. Call of the Wolf Wolverine
  3. Counterspell
  4. Cure Light Wounds
  5. Detect Magic
  6. Locate Animal or Plant
  7. Pass Without Trace
  8. Predict Weather
  9. Protection from Evil
  10. Purify Food and Water
  11. Remove Fear
  12. Sharpness
  13. Command Word
  14. Display of Power
  15. Ice Floe
  16. Shatter Blade
  17. Slipperiness
  18. Thunderclap
  19. Weave Smoke
  20. Cause Fear
  21. Cause Light Wounds
  22. Frighten Beasts
  23. Infuriate Person
  24. Slicing Blow


Second-Level Runic Spells

  1. Bless
  2. Call of the Wolf Wolverine Pack
  3. Cure Moderate Wounds
  4. Eldritch Armour
  5. Holy Chant
  6. Ogre Power
  7. Resist Cold
  8. Resist Fire
  9. Righteous Wrath
  10. Speak with Animals
  11. Swift Sword
  12. Swimming
  13. Burning Sparks
  14. Charm Animal
  15. Circling Winds
  16. Hold Person
  17. Ring of Fire
  18. Shrouding Fog
  19. Wave of Earth
  20. Bane
  21. Blindness
  22. Cause Moderate Wounds
  23. Infuriate Beast
  24. Necromantic Potence

Hyperborea HR

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About K-Slacker

Gamer and referee for online gameblogs.
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