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i

CREDITS

Designed and Written by: Kyle Simons


Edited by: John Adamus and Ryan Macklin
Layout by: Daniel Solis
Cover by: Inho Kim
Interior Artwork by: Haoran Zhang, Theresa Simons, Jamie Lafond
Map by: Tony Dowler
Playtesters: The A Team; William, Rudy and Alex of the Moms Basement
Podcast, Adam Bosarge, Grace Lee, Judson Wright, Perry Kennedy.
Magicians is 2013 by Kyle Simons, text and illustrations. All rights reserved.

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Table of Contents
Magicians Overview

vi

Introduction8

Playing a Session

65

OVERVIEW66
STARTING THE GAME 67

Setting11

PLOT CARDS69

CONGRATULATIONS11

THE FIRST SESSION AND ONGOING

ON BELIEF30

PLAY 75

THE MAGIC UNDERGROUND 34

ROUNDS OF PLAY76

THE HWARANG 35

SCENE FRAMING 77

BEASTS OF THE WILD40

DRAMA TURNS79

Creating the Cast

49

OVERVIEW50
THE CHARACTER SHEET50
CONFLICT CHARACTER CARDS 53

CASTING TURNS80
ENDING A GAME SESSION84
ON DRAMA TURNS 85
ON CASTING TURNS 85

BRAINSTORMING THE CAST 54

Being a Magician

87

YOUR PROTAGONIST 55

WHAT MAGIC CAN AND CANT DO88

YOUR TRUE NAME AND MENTOR 55

EMOTIONS AND MAGICAL POWER90

YOUR CONFLICT CHARACTER60

ATTEMPTING MAGIC94

TYING YOUR MAIN CAST TOGETHER62

THE NEGOTIATION 95

FINISHING UP 63

SPECIAL SITUATIONS
AND CASTING SPELLS99
TYPES OF MAGIC101
CONFLICTS AND FIGHTING110

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Casting Magic

117

181

THE THREE SYSTEMS 118

RITUALS182

THE TECH 118

SPELLS WITH TWISTS185

BASICS OF WRITING AND

ADDING IN THE RANDOM 186

PRONUNCIATION119

LIMITING YOURSELF 186

READING AND WRITING: 120

PACE AND SINGLE-SESSION GAMES187

WARDS125

GOING TRADITIONAL188

FURTHER LEARNING

MORE POINTS 189

WITH THE MASTER SYSTEM128

ADDING ADVANCEMENT 189

The Prodigy System

131

THE NOUNS 131

FAST FIGHTS 190


GRADUATED FAILURE 190

THE VERBS132

Nouns and Verbs

USING DRAMA POINTS

NOUNS:193

TO CAST SPELLS 133

VERBS197

The Apprentice System137

Thanks202

VERB CONJUGATION138

The Master System

147

ILLUSION MAGIC 148


TELEKINETIC MAGIC156
STRIKING MAGIC158
AUGMENTING MAGIC159
DISPELLING MAGIC 160
HEALING MAGIC161
CONDITIONING MAGIC163
CLAIRVOYANCE MAGIC165
TEMPORAL MAGIC 169
SUMMONING MAGIC173

Threats175

Optional Rules

193

Magicians Overview
Chapter 1: Introduction

Learn what Magicians is all about, what it aims to achieve and the idea

behind magic in Magicians.

Chapter 2: Setting

Learn about Hwang-Gung College of Magical Pedagogy. The classes

you take; the magic you learn; the professors, students and workers that live,
work and study in the halls along with the other players. Learn more about
the Korean superstitions, folklore, mythology, creatures and culture that add
a unique flavor to a modern-day setting.

Chapter 3: Setting Up the Cast

Create your characters. Figure out your protagonists True Name, create a

conflict character that another player will use to stir up trouble, and a robust
cast to get a game session started in no time at all.

Chapter 4: Playing a Session

Get started playing a game session of Magicians. The different types

of rounds there are and your role in telling an awesome collaborative story.

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Chapter 5: Being a Magician

Brush up on your magicwhat it can do, what types there are and what

it means to be a magician.

Chapter 6: Casting Magic

Start throwing around the magic you learned about in Chapter 5 and learn

how to cast spells in the game with the help of your smartphone or computer.

Chapter 7: The Prodigy Magic System

Jump into the basic magic system to get started. Learn thirteen archetypal

nouns and verbs in order to cast any spell you can think of.

Chapter 8: The Apprentice Magic System

Build on your knowledge of Korean and take the training wheels off

by using the familiar noun and verb combo system without the archetypal
words to hold you back.

Chapter 9: The Master Magic System

Begin your mastery of the Korean language by casting spells in full,

complete sentences and where certain types of magic use certain grammar
patterns and vocabulary.

Chapter 10: Threats

Level up your game by making threats like monsters, villains or other

characters more deadly and dangerous.

Chapter 11: Optional Rules

Play Magicians using a traditional Game Master model, increase creativity

by limiting your characters, take your failures into the dungeon or add a bit
of advancement incentives into the mix to add some variety to your game.

vii

Introduction
H

ow would you solve your problems if you were a teenager capable of


magic? Can someone with the power to remake the world ever truly
grow up? Magicians is about teenage drama, emotions, hormones
and magic. Its about students at Hwang-Gung College of Magical

Pedagogy in Seoul, Korea, where students learn there is a reason for Korean

superstitions, and a long history behind Koreas folklore and mythology.


Nine-tailed foxes prowl the night and seduce the weak, dokkaebi roam the
mountainside. Dragons live in some of the many rivers and lakes of Korea
while other strange and foreign creatures hide in plain sight. Students learn
magic, deal with life as a teenager and relearn everything they know about
the worldsecret underground magical orders sew sesame seeds into their
skin and tattoo themselves with blood, creatures flit in and out of shadows,
insects carry souls and urban legends come to life in darkened alleyways.
Magicians is all about magic. Its about removing all constraints so that
the only thing holding you back is what you know. There is no need for a
teacherall you need is your phone, friends and a few hours every week. If
youve ever wondered what casting magic would sound like, feel like and if
youve ever wanted a tangible system you can grab hold of and be creative

INTRODUCTION

with, you ll be learning Korean and casting spells in no time. Knowledge is


the only thing that can set power freeso start learning.
Unlike most role-playing games, Magicians is based on player skill as
much as it is on role-playing a character. As you go through the chapters of
this book you will gradually learn the Korean language and by the time you
reach the end of the book and have played a few games you will have a firm
grasp on it. You will have read it, written it and spoken it. And you will be
a magician.
A game like this would not have been possible even a few months ago. In
order to realistically learn a new language you need coaching. Pronunciation
and fluency is essential and not everyone has the fluency in both English
and Korean needed to be able to help others through the initial stages. But
Siri (iPhone), among other apps (like Dragon Dictation), is now capable of
dictation in Korean and Androids Majel will have the same capability when
released. You will be able to tell if you cast a spell well enough for it to succeed
simply by seeing if the app understands what you said and if it matches up
to the spell you want to cast.
In addition, magiciansrpg.com is set up so that I will be coaching and
walking you through any problems you may have with the language. Video
tutorials are available and there is an ever-growing community forming
around the premise of learning a language via roleplaying. Having a gaming
group that is interested in exploring and learning another language together
promotes a great atmosphere to casually learn a new language.
There are three systems of magic in this book: The first is one that requires
almost no prep time in order to play; you are given archetypal verbs and
nouns you combine to produce the desired spell or effect called the Prodigy
System. The second, called the Apprentice System, takes the same principle
but has you choose your own nouns and verbs to suit your intent and spell.
The third system is more involved and requires you to learn grammar so as
to be able to speak in full, complete sentences and is called the Master System.
The Systems work well in gaining a firm handle on the basic systems
allowing for easier learning of the more advanced master system but any of
them can be used independent from one another.

INTRODUCTION

More on Magic

Everything has a True Name in the language of magic. It is the language

of dragons and other mythical, magical beasts. One who knows the True
Name of a being has power over it. Each character has their own True Name
(which only they and the person who gave it to them know) in addition to the
name they use and give out freely. In order to gain influence over a person or
creature with a True Name, the targets name must be known by the speaker
in order to cast spells that affect the targets free will. Words act as a shell
to contain and release the spell, magic and intent of the caster. This is why
casters always cast spells in another languagespeaking another language
forces focus, perception and limits abstract thought. Your magic is fueled by
the drama going on around you, by the love, loss, heartache and betrayal that
is part of the everyday life of a teenage magician.

Setting
I

Congratulations

f you are reading this, you have been accepted into the Hwang-Gung
College of Magical Pedagogy, the most prestigious institution for the
study of magic in all of Asia. We test many but only a very select few
are accepted into our program. There is a great deal of competition

here as we accept only the very best and we encourage a healthy amount of
rivalry between students. You may feel that you are exceptional and excel,
that you are a caliber above the students you normally study with. Perhaps
you were never challenged in your life, but bear in mind that everyone that

comes to Hwang-Gung is exceptional. You are now not just among your peers,
but your betters as well. Welcome to Hwang-Gung.
You may be wondering why you have been chosen for Hwang-Gung
instead of a more familiar, western school like Hawksleys. Magic must be taught
in and spoken in a language completely unfamiliar to the student and studies
have shown that all concepts and ideas relating to magic are both more easily
grasped when being taught a foreign language in a new environment. The
mind must be clear in order to cast magic, free from emotion and cast with
clarity and focus. Here at Hwang-Gung we are renowned for our meditation

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SETTING

and casting techniques. Not only does the transition to an Asian culture help
with the acquisition of magic and the concepts surrounding it, but it builds
character, discipline and facilitates focused study. Your stay here will not be
familiar or comfortable. Your studies will not be easy and the teachers will not
be lenient. The vast majority of students simply do not make it to their senior
year but our promise is this: the process works for those that are tempered
in the fire. We produce the vast majority of the finest magicians in the world
and we offer that opportunity to you now.

Overview and overhead map of locations:


Different buildings for each

Lake Meru

discipline of magic.

Migadaya Forest

Dormsmale/female

Vulture Peak

Professors Rooms

The Tree of Enlightenment

Staff Housing

Vault

Dining Hall

Graveyard

Library

The Founders' Tombs

Study Hall

Various towers set up for

Labs

Gymnasium

Shrinesfor various religions

Dueling Range

Hall of Healing

The four gates

Headmasters Quarters

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SETTING

defense and transportation

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SETTING

DISCIPLINES, ELEMENTS AND YEAR

Each discipline has a spot on campus where they meet, study, and do

other scholarly activities. Some of the disciplines, like the mixed martial
arts (mixed in that the martial art is mixed with magic) use the courtyard or
gymnasium. There are a lot of places for clubs and diciplines to get together
and pursue their studies. Many disciplines and clubs have their own rules and
traditions about admission. For example, the Illusionists are well known for
changing their clubs location and it has always been a well-tended tradition
that any applicants must find the club house to become a member. This is
typical and you will not find the locations of most club houses on your guide
map but there is a designated space for each club somewhere on the grounds.
Depending on the year and date of birth, students are sorted into one
of the elements (wood, fire, earth, metal, water). In addition, the beads
studentsreceive protect them while on school grounds and act as their means
oftransport between the gates of the school and the gates in Seoul. These
beads tell which year the student is in, as well as bear the students zodiac
animal, according to their birth year. Remember: When prioritizing the needs
of one group over another, a students first loyalty is to his discipline, followed
by his animal, followed by his element.

DORMS/PROFESSORS ROOMS/STAFF HOUSING

All students are separated into female and male dorms with the professors

rooms and facilities overlooking both of them. Students all share a room
with three other roommates and there is a communal bathing facility in each
main dorm. Students are not permitted in any dorm other than their own
for any reason. Students may search out their professors only during their
office hours and are never permitted in the building without an appointment.
The staff housing area is off-limits to students and it is expected that they be
treated with the greatest of respect as they handle the day-to-day running
of the school. Students are expected to let them go about their job in peace.
When asked for assistance students are required to provide it.

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SETTING

Never, ever, ever go to the professor facilities outside of school hours even
for the gravest of emergencies. I guarantee it is not worth it.

LIBRARY AND STUDY HALL

The library is on the main floor and Hwang-Gung prides itself on its

collection of texts on magics from all over the world but particularly texts
on magics, religion, mythology, culture, traditions, prayers and anything
else that any magician may require. Remember: Not all books and facilities
are available to students. All students are required to handle books with the
utmost of care, comport themselves properly and to follow all the rules of
the library to the letter. The main study is found within the library at the
center but there are available areas to study on every floor of the library as
it extends upward.

LABS, GYMNASIUM AND DUELING RANGE

The labs, gymnasium and dueling range are where students practice a

great deal of their magic. One must learn by doing and the college ensures
the highest security precautions are in place when practicing and working
with new and involved magics. In addition to the heavy enchantments, all
casters and participants must have their beads on at all times.

They arent joking, the air is positively thick with enchantments in the
labs It can be hard to breathe at times but watching a mixed martial arts
match is a pleasure that few pass up, even if it must be done in such a stuffy
room. The dueling range can be just as much fun, though not quite as new and
coolbut at least it can be done in the open air outside.

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SETTING

THE FOUR GATES

Only two of the four are usable. These gates are gateways that connect

Seoul to the school and are the easiest modes of transportation. The gates
are constantly guarded for your protection, closing down at 12:00 midnight
exactly without exception.

LAKE MERU AND MIGADAYA FOREST

Lake Meru is about 2 kilometers away on an enormous plateau of the

mountain. Students are no longer permitted in this area as we believe it


was the constant badgering of the students, visitors and faculty that led
our resident dragon to disappear without a trace. The area is particularly
dangerous at night and during winter. At its center is a small island with a
tunnel leading deep into the mountain. It is one of the passages that leads
to Migadaya Forest, the very same forest where the Buddha was said to have
preached. The forest is thick and wild with magic. Students are absolutely
not permitted in or around the forest without supervision.

The forest is the source! Magical creatures escape from there and Professor
Kim speculated once in class that deep within it is one of the wells that contain
the source of magic. One of the wells? What?

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SETTING

VULTURE PEAK

Vulture Peak is another dangerous place for students to go unattended.

It is, however, a pilgrimage that every student makes each year. Not the true
peak of the mountain, it is named after the Vulture Peak where the Buddha
often retreated. It is the farthest anyone can go on foot. Many retreats are
held here and students have been known to climb up to Vulture Peak to seek
enlightenment. Vultures numbering in the thousands nestle and live among the
rocks throughout the mountain. It is said that Mara (the Lord of Misfortune)
takes the form of a vulture and hampers the meditations of those seeking
enlightenment. It is indeed a difficult task to meditate on the mountain,
but especially so at Vulture Peak. Those wishing to face their fears and seek
true enlightenment make the trip up to Vulture Peak and spelunk the caves
that lead in to the mountain. It is said that Mahkyapa, one of Buddhas
disciples, still waits in the cave with the cloak he and Buddha exchanged at
their first meeting. Legend has it that those who reach true enlightenment
will be given the cloak to wear.

All the hippy students always talk about having visions at the peakIm
betting its just the altitude. You go missing on the mountain and its doubtful
theyll even find your body with so many vultures around. Students are required
to go every year for a reasonalways the same old story about Mara and the
vulture. Scary.

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SETTING

THE TREE OF ENLIGHTENMENT

The Tree of Enlightenment is said to be one of the oldest trees in the world.

It sits in the courtyard of the school. Many group meditations are held around
or in front of it as it exudes a calming effect that many find soothing. There
are always students gathered underneath its branches, studying, meditating
or just passing the time. The tree is so large and its trunk so immense that it
takes several minutes to walk around it.

I swear it moves sometimes and in just the right light it appears to have
a face. It wouldnt surprise me if it was sentient but I dont have the patience
to talk to it. I saw Lord of the Rings.

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SETTING

THE VAULT

There are always magics that do not belong out in the real world. This

is where secrets, objects and dark magics that have no place in the real world
are kept. The main floor of the Vault also has a bank and safe deposit system,
though all are guarded via magics and people rather than computers or
cameras.

THE GRAVEYARD AND THE FOUNDERS TOMBS

The school has its own graveyard on site where students or faculty can be

buried. The large hills both on campus and across the mountain are said to
be the tombs of the founders and all the headmasters that follow after them.
The founders are buried with their most precious possessions and are said
to rise and protect the school whenever there is a need.

Its common knowledge among the students that the catacombs connect all
of the tombs as well. The staff goes down there to keep them clean, repair wards
or whatever but Ive noticed they never go very far in. Who knows whats down
there! I mean all these weird spell components must be coming from somewhere,
right? There are entrances, exits, and secret passageways all over the school
that lead into and out of the catacombs. Great for maybe a quick getaway.

SHRINES AND THE HALL OF HEALING

The school is sensitive to the needs of students wishing to practice their

faith. In addition, many classes are held on all various religions and prayers.
One of the most exciting fields is patterning, lattice work and arithmancy.
Students and teachers alike find themselves believing in far more than they
thought. Many believe that science, magic and religion are often at odds when,
in fact, they often support one another. How simple prayers can generate such
complex spell patterns and lattice structures is still being heavily researched
but it poses many questions which are explored in our constantly up-to-date
curriculum. The Hall of Healing acts as a medical center for practitioners of
various faiths, healers in general and even surgeons trained in both magical
and non-magical care. Some of the finest facilities on the planet are maintained
and the medical research department is second to none.

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SETTING

There are few students who deny a higher power after taking some of the
religious and prayer classes. How such simple prayers can yield such amazing,
intricate work is amazing.

HEADMASTERS QUARTERS

The headmaster keeps office hours even longer and later into the night

than most professors. Students, teachers and visitors are welcome and the
headmaster strives to be as accessible as possible to all those around him
when he is not out or tending to the school.

Pfft yeah right, I think Ive seen him twice the entire time Ive been here?
And those were for ceremonies.

History

The name of the College comes from Korean mythologyHwang-Gung

() being one of the four Heavenly Men who married the four Heavenly
Women. They then gave birth to twelve children, who would become the
ancestors of all people. From their heavenly fortress, the heavenly people
ruled over all living things in honor of their goddess, Mago ().
These ancestors originally only drank milk from the heart of the Earth
(). At this time, the lifespan of the people was 10,000 years and they
were said to be able to speak without making a noise and could act or see
without seeing. Unfortunately, as the population of the people grew more
and more, the milk of the Earth began to run out. One man, named Jiso
(), gave up his ration of milk so that others could survive. His pain
grew so great that he decided to hurl himself from the cliffs nearby but, when

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SETTING

he arrived, he found vines of grapes growing along the edges of the cliffs.
Unable to stand it any longer, he hungrily devoured the vines of grapes, and
as he did so, the five tastes became known to man and this incident became
known as the incident (or change) of the Five Tastes (sourness, bitterness,
spiciness, sweetness and saltiness).
Jiso returned to his people and spread word of his discovery and soon
everyone began eating the grapes and the vines they hung on. However,
those that ate from the grapes began growing teeth and from these teeth
spewed saliva that soon soured and turned to venom as punishment for
eating another living thing. Soon they began to see but could no longer hear
the heavens. They were no longer pure and so began changing. They gave
birth to children that resembled animals, their skin grew coarse and their feet
became heavy. Jiso was blamed for their fate and he and all those who ate of
the grapes were cast into exile.
As Jiso was cast out, Hwang-Gung, one of the Four Guardians, Heavenly
Men and ancestor of the people, tried to make the exiles feel better by
saying that they only need become pure again to relinquish their misery.
Unfortunately, upon hearing this, Jiso and the others began to believe that
all they needed was the milk of the Earth to become pure again, as they used
to. They razed the fortress that surrounded the spring containing the milk
but the spring immediately dispersed and soon become nothing but inedible
earth. This left everyone without milk to drink or a place to live. A famine
began and everyone was forced to eat anything they could get their hands
oneven plants and animals. Of them all, only Hwang-Gung begged Mago
for forgiveness, swearing that he would not rest until mankind recovered its
pure nature again.
Mago bestowed upon him Three Heavenly Heirlooms that had control
over water, fire and air as well as great knowledge. He taught the people
agriculture, arranged the people into clans with respective leaders, gave
an heirloom to each of the clan leaders and then sent them off in different
directions.
Hwang-Gung ruled for a thousand years and after his reign he departed
to the Heavenly Mountain and became a stone that spoke the message of
Yul-Ryeo (), constantly reminding the people to strive to regain their
purity. Three thousand years later, under the rule and guidance of his son

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SETTING

and their sons, the people finally lost their animal-like appearance and slowly
began to regain their heavenly image.
This was when Korea was said to have been established and, afterward,
Hwan-Ung () descended from heaven with Three Heavenly Heirlooms,
a group of three thousand servants, and under the protection of the Three
Lords of Wind when he could no longer bear watching the people living so
poorly. He built the City of the Gods and governed human affairs and it
was during this time that a tiger and a bear came to him and pleaded with
Hwan-Ung to become human.
He gave them each a handful of mugwort and twenty cloves of garlic and
told them to fast for 100 days in a dark cave while remaining careful not to
see any sunlight during the ritual. The tiger could not endure the trial and
soon ran away but the bear endured and was transformed into a beautiful
woman on the 21st day and was called Ung-Nyeo (). Soon Ung-Nyeo
began to wish for a child but no one would have her as she had been a beast
before her transformation. She prayed everyday underneath a holy tree and
Hwan-Ung, having been moved by her prayers, took human form and, through
him, she gave birth to a son. This son was the forefather of the Korean people
and established the kingdom of Asadal (), later known as Joseon
(). He lived until he was 1,908 years of age, when he decided to leave
the mortal world and sought the quiet of the mountains. He became the
divine spirit of the mountain, or the mountain god, Sansillyeong ().
The school is named after one of the Heavenly Men who strove for
innocent and purity, who taught knowledge, responsibility and discipline
and who was entirely selfless. These are ideals we hope every person at our
school will strive for.

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SETTING

REGISTRATION

All students are required to share a room with three other boys or girls

of, most often, differing nationalities. Needless to say boarding school can
be challenging for students, especially when grouped with new foreign peers
but we stand by the system we have developed here over the years. Students
tend to become very independent since, as long as they follow the schools
rules, they can do whatever they want. This freedom of independence can
be both good and bad.
Graduate programs are offered and the school plays host to a vast and
diverse group of magicians who are often on campus for special projects or
to use the facilities for research.

Teachers will know your background, where youre from, if youre hard
working or a rebel, who your friends are, who you date and what youre like
outside of class. The students you meet at boarding school are the people you
live, eat, see and sleep with. Everybody becomes close, so even if you do not like
the person you still get to know them well. Your friends become your family.

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SETTING

RULES OF THE SCHOOL

Students are expected to be in uniform at all times when not in their

dorms or off the school grounds. There is a rigid set of rules involving the
showing of respect and the way students at Hwang-Gung are expected to
conduct themselves. They are reiterated here for emphasis.

Malicious or harmful activity is not permitted. Period. The dueling


range is for instructional purposes and not to be used to settle disputes
between students. Students are encouraged to use the area for study and
to hone their skills and magics.

Cheating at Hwang-Gung is never permitted, any and all students


caught cheating will face harsh punishmentmost often expulsion.

Respect all those around you. Bowing to show respect to


your seniors, professors and staff is required. General
courtesy to all is strictly enforced.
There are many other rules that you

will pick up on and mostly fall


into the common sense
category of normal
social conduct.

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SETTING

CLASS SCHEDULES

Students are both allowed and encouraged to choose their own classes

according to their interests and talents but some classes are required for all
students. These mandatory classes will be marked during the registration
period and will show up on your schedule automatically, so you need not
register for them at the start of the semester.
Hwang-Gung College of Magical Pedagogy leads the magical world
in programs especially focused on Asian culture, tradition, customs and
magics and is famous for its programs on Korean and Oriental Medicine,
Zen meditation, Buddhist beading and enchantment as well as hybrid mixed
magical martial arts.

EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

Hwang-Gung College is proud to maintain competitive teams in both

mundane sports like American football, soccer, Korean taekwondo and Jokgu (foot volleyball), as well as magical ones like dueling. Duels are fought
under a strict set of rules and always on a dueling court to reduce the chance
of fatal injury to zero.

TRIPS AND EXCURSIONS

Excursions are held several times a year to various places, mostly within

Korea, to help facilitate the learning of the Korean language as well as


customs, traditions and history that are relevant to your magical education.
These are wonderful opportunities to see the world and experience it under
world-class tutelage.

PLAYS AND THE DRAMA CLUB

While Hwang-Gung has all the well-funded clubs a student could think

of, perhaps the most famous of all of them is the drama club. The drama club
is one of the most sought-after clubs to get into on campus. At least once
a semester an intricate, elaborate and breath-taking play is put on with the
full support of the Illusionists. They are showcases of talent and are often
attended by members of our sister schools from all over the world. The plays

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SETTING

often involve the retelling of traditional Korean folktales such as Heungbu


and Nolbu or The Fox Sister. There is a different one put on every semester
and each one draws from a different source for inspiration.

TUITION

A five-year program at a school as distinguished at Hwang-Gung is not

inexpensive but there are many programs set up for students to help pay
off their tuition should they need financial aid. These programs range from
scholarships and student loans to volunteer work, such as helping the staff with
their duties like: preparing and serving meals, cleaning and laundry. Chores
and discipline are good experiences for young students to have in their lives.

THE FACULTY AND STAFF

The faculty and staff live in separate facilities on-site with the professors

staying in a building next to the (separated) male and female dorms. There
is a communal bathhouse and wash facilities in each of the dorms. You may
notice that a great deal of the staff and facility are from other countries and
Hwang-Gung prides itself on an extremely diverse set of courses and only
the best educators. All manner of magics are represented at Hwang-Gung,
from all continents and countries.

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SETTING

THE CAMPUS
Hwang-Gung College is spread out over a large plateau in the mountains
of Korea. For safety reasons students and faculty do not know the exact
location of the school but, through the use of magic, travel back and forth
via the schools gates.

Many students believe that the school doesnt even actually exist in the
normal world and is built atop the Heavenly Mountain. Still others believe that
its built over top of the ruined City of the Gods after a long history of invasion
and destruction. I say theyve been spending too much time at Vulture Peak if
you ask me.

Students may or may not know that the city of Seoul in South Korea had a
great wall built around it that follows the natural geography of the surrounding
area as it runs along the ridgeline of the four mountains that surround the
upper Cheonggyecheon valley. While most of this wall still remains intact
the city has, of course, grown out and expanded well past these walls. There
are four great gates built into the wall called Sadaemun () and four
lesser, small gates called Sasomun (). The four great gates include
Dongdaemun in the east with Namdaemun in the south (unfortunately a fire
in 2008 burned and destroyed a large portion of the gate). Seodaemun (also
now long since torn down) in the west and the now accessible Sukjeongmun
in the north are the other two great gates.

While it is common knowledge that Sukjeonmun was closed because of


the 1968 attack on the Blue House by North Korean forces, the rumor is that
it was closed by the school when a radical North Korea cabal of Magicians
used our schools gate system to teleport themselves right into Seoul from
Pyongyang! No wonder the gate is kept under heavy guard. Now do you still
think Namdaemun was burned to the ground just by some drunk who was angry
about not getting paid?

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SETTING

When students arrive in Korea, they are picked up in Seoul and given
a set of magically-infused beads that allow them to use the transportation
system set up between the gates in Seoul and the gates of the school. Two of
the gates no longer function and because of this there is improved security
protocol and precautions to follow when using them for the safety of everyone
and the school. A midnight curfew is strictly enforced and the twelve oclock
drum signals the gates closing down for the night and reopen again at five
in the morning everyday.

Never forget your beads! Theyre a pain in the ass to make and it takes
months to get another set enchanted. Its worse than getting a passport and
theres a whole investigation if you lose it. Students get expelled for allowing
such powerful magics out of their hands.

Be aware that technology does not work well when around magic and
barely at all at Hwang-Gung. Even simple electronics like radios or calculators
do not function so a challenge that all students and professors face is adapting
to an older way of doing things. Cooking, cleaning, laundry, homework,
research, etc. must all be done by hand on campus. Electronics all function
once removed from the confines of the school but usually not well on the
mountain. A trip to Seoul is necessary for some who require the use of their
electronics or perhaps for their homework on a computer. Students who
decide to leave the school and are not back by twelve oclock curfew or those
that leave without a day pass face harsh penaltiespossibly expulsion. The
safety of the school, staff and students is taken very seriously.

TRAVEL

Of particular great advantage to studying in a foreign country is the

opportunity to travel and experience the culture of the country in which you
are staying. Students will be properly educated in Korean culture, tradition,
customs and history as it often ties in to the learning of the language and
therefore to the act of casting and practicing of magic. We encourage students
to take in all that the country and school has to offer.

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SETTING

All students are first evaluated before being allowed into the general
population of Korea; since Korean is used as the shell and vehicle of much
of the spell casting taught at Hwang-Hung, it is essential that students have
control over their abilities. All students must complete Practical Magic 101
and receive a passing grade before they are permitted beyond the walls of the
school and through the gates.
Students will find Seoul has a great deal to offer. Hongdae, Itaewon and
the Gangnam area are always favorite hangouts of students when away from
the school and areas around City Hall, the old downtown and shopping areas
are easily accessible through Dongdaemun gate. There are some places that
are off-limits to students and, should they accidentally forget, their beads
will provide a gentle reminder not to enter such areas that are known to be
especially dangerous or those that have a great deal of old magic such as the
Great Palaces of Seoul (Deoksugung, Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung).

A WORD TO THE WISE

Your eyes are newly opened to the world, you will be constantly be

reevaluating the world and what you know as you progress through your
studies. You will find that the stories and tales passed down throughout history
are done so for a reason and many have a degree of veracity if you look deep
enough. Since you are staying in Korea and at Hwang-Gung College a great
deal of your study will be on Asianspecifically Koreanmythology, folklore
and fairytales so it is important for students to keep an open mind in this
regard. Students who scoff in the face of warning and who try to show off or
feign bravery often do not last long at Hwang-Gung. It is better to be safe than
sorry, as they say. The area surrounding the school in particular, but also all
of Korea, is known to hold a vast array of creatures unseen to the untrained
eye and largely ignored or misrepresented by an ignorant population.

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SETTING

On Belief

by Professor Bloom

Belief affects our reality in world-changing ways. It is all the more

important that first year students like yourself understand some of the
fundamentals even before arriving in Korea. Peoples beliefs and superstitions
are manifesting along the magical fault lines of the world and in Seoul in
particular. Contemporary beliefs along with superstitions, religious values
and ideas have deep roots in Korea and have a firmer grasp on Seoul with
each passing day. Korea is a country rich in magic and with a long, tragic
historyand many of its people are well aware of such powers, though to
varying degrees. There are things which people have believed and followed
for centuries and it is that belief in them that is causing them to manifest in
certain areas that have a particular presence in everyones minds and in the
collective unconscious. These places are called Places of Power and is where
magic is strongest and are often the focal points for events that bring these
things into being or where events that reshape the world as we know it occur.
There are many ideas that are dangerous to your well-being that need to be
addressed so as to prepare you for life in Korea.

Oriental Medicine and exotic foods have always had a place in most
Asian countries, especially China but all over Asia as well. Oriental
medicine traces its deep roots back as far as 3000 BCE and is a powerfully
believed-in resource and commodity in Korea. An entire black market
exists around finding rare items and practitioners of magic are usually
involved. Often they are searching for these components for secret agendas.
Regardless, it is important that you think no longer in terms of plausibility
but rather from faith and belief. Foods like eel and congealed-blood
soup, herbal medicine, acupuncture, moxibustion, chuna manipulation,
aromatherapy and meditation are all ideas that students are expected to
remain open to and are also required classes.

Fortune Telling. Whether it be saju, tarot cards, hwatu cards, palm


reading or psychics, fortune telling is massively popular in Korea. The

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SETTING

Tojeong bigyeol, written by Yi Ji-ham during the Joseon dynasty, is a book


used to make annual horoscope forecasts based on a persons month,
day, year and time of birth in regards to health, business, money, career,
knowledge and romance.

Death. The number 4 has a similar pronunciation with the word for
death and so is avoided (like the number 13 in western cultures). Sticking
chopsticks in a bowl of rice also brings about bad luck as that is what
is done during ancestral rites to signify the dead spirit partaking in the
food. Also, writing a name in red marker is only done for the deceased
and is never done otherwise.

Whistling at night, or playing a Korean flute, summons ghosts and/or


snakes to your door. While there is a technique to doing so that you will
learn in class, it is not to be practiced without supervision.

Slippery and Sticky foods are observed before big events of importance
(mainly by students for exams but other things as well). Eating slippery
foods like seaweed soup is bad luck and can contribute to failure which
is why sticky foods like Korean rice cakes are eaten instead. For the same
reason, you will find that many students do not shave during times of
exams or important events.

Nails are never trimmed at night. Mice, insects, crows or vermin that
eat your fingernails can either turn into a copy of you, steal your soul,
or both. People without souls gradually deteriorate until they eventually
become a leech (see below). Symptoms are very similar to other diseases
such as pneumonia and soullessness is extremely difficult to diagnose;
rules for careful grooming are therefore in place with all seriousness.
Likewise, insects and mice are never killed at night as they could be
carrying someones soul or spirit.

Moving is only done on days without evil (or guests) and when you
leave your old house you do not make a final sweep of the floor in order
to confuse ghosts and spirits so that they cannot follow you to your
new home. The school is also a special case. When you are given leave
in Seoul there is a ritual you will learn that must be done before passing
through the gates that lead back into the city. Failure to do so might see
you either carrying ghosts or other entities common to the area with

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SETTING

you through the gate or you providing a trail for them to followboth
of which cannot be allowed to happen.

Butterflies and moths have properties that will blind you if they get
in or too close to your eyes. Never allow one near your eyes and never
touch or rub your eyes after having touched one or if you have been in
close proximity.

White dogs are used to ward off ghosts and act as guardians on campus;
they are to be treated with the care and respect they deserve.

Fidgeting is not permitted and will be punished in class to rid you of


such bad habits as it actively drives good fortune away and invites the
opposite.
These are some of the beliefs and superstitions that affect our everyday

life here in Korea and that must be followed both on and off campus. Off
campus in particular there are certain entities that make themselves known
with a certain frequency that requires all students attention.

Masked Women. Although their roots seem to stem from Japan, there
have been multiple sightings with increasing frequency as the public fear
they incite only causes belief in them to grow. Masked women are always
beautiful and always wear the surgical masks commonly worn by people
suffering or recovering from an illness or cold. Masked women sometimes
wear masks of different color that can signify different abilities. Everything
from spitting acid to having burning hands has been reported and they
always have knives. The urban legends say masked women ask people if
they are pretty and kill anyone that says they are not. Conversely, if they
say she is, she leaves them with the same disfigurement masked women
have and use the masks to covera slit along the mouth from ear to ear.

Leeches. Leeches are people that have lost their souls and have
succumbed to soullessness. They feed off of ambient noise and light
and tend to crowd around areas that have a lot of it like Seoul Plaza or
Gangnam. Leeches often do not realize the cause of their illness is due to
their soul being separated from their physical body and so often believe
they suffer from a chronic illness of some kind. Leeches suffer from long
bouts of memory loss in which they revert to base animal instincts and
often turn psychotic. Many murderers and serial killers are leeches that

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SETTING

gradually degrade to a point where they only act on the desire to take
the life of another human being. It is speculated that they do so because
they sense the soul within others and either envy them, wanting the soul
for their own or despise others for having one. Restoring a soul to a
body is impossible without magic and most leeches are too far along for
treatment. But if diagnosed early, treatment of soullessness is possible,
assuming of course the patients soul can be recovered.

Inmyeon Gyeon. Inmyeon Gyeon resemble dogs or other canines that

have a human face instead of that of a dog. In Korea and Japan these dogs
are said to be the deceased of traffic accidents or perhaps the product of
experiments probably due to all the sightings of them lurking around
accidents that leave the victim(s) injured. These dogs collect the souls of
victims while they are in a weakened state and, if the victim survives, sell
their soul back to them at a high cost. It is unknown what is done with
souls that no longer have an owner. The Gyeon also chase and collect
souls from any animal or insect that happens to be carrying around
souls at night. An Inmyeon Gyeon often wears the faces of one of the
souls it possesses.

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SETTING

The Magic Underground

by Professor Fineheart

There have been many rumors circulating around campus about what

has become known as the Magic Underground that exists in Seoul and
perhaps other cities. Like you, they are talented individuals that possess the
ability to do magic. However, unlike you, there are those that lack the proper
discipline, mental and physical fortitude required to cast magic or those that
are simply unable to be accepted into a school for magic due to a lack of
vacancy or other numerous reasons.
We are aware of two groups in the Seoul area that practice magic on some
scale that are not former or current students of Hwang-Gung or affiliated
with any other school for magic. How these groups came to be are topics of
great speculation but it is best to be aware of them so as to keep your distance.
Practitioners of magic who become a danger to themselves and others or who
require proper training are dealt with by the Hwarang and is no concern of
the students here at Hwang-Gung. However, a complete lack of awareness
on the subject would not be appropriate either.

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SETTING

The first group calls themselves Seedlings, so named for the black seeds
they embed in their skin in different shapes and designs. The kind of magic
learned in the so-called underground is dangerous and unpredictable and
has since become known as organic magic. Due to organic magic becoming
popular of late, Hwang-Gung will be offering a course on the subject as we
believe students should at least be aware of the different types of magic.
However, organic magic is not to be used outside of class or on school grounds
without supervision as with all dangerous, volatile or other unknown types
of magic.
The term organic magic is applied widely to practices of magic that are
still being explored and especially to a casting style that is loose and fluid
compared with the classical, solid, firm, efficient and more predictable way
of casting magic taught at Hwang-Gung. This term will be more properly
defined and categorized once a curriculum has been devised that meets the
rules, guidelines and needs of both the student body and our faculty here
at Hwang-Gung.
The second group has become known as the Bloods due to the magical
techniques they use when inking their skin. Instead of common tattoo ink,
this group uses magically infused blood of varying kinds that are drawn on for
power when casting magic. While this group falls under the umbrella category
of organic magic and has many similarities in practice to seed magic, both
seed magic and blood magic will not be taught at the school until further
research can be made as to the side-effects and conditions that are associated
with the procedures that are required for blood and seed magic. Organic magic
classes will focus solely on casting technique but graduate work for labs and
testing on said abilities and techniques will be implemented later this semester.

The Hwarang

The Hwarang is a group that dates back to ancient times, more than 2000
years ago when they were formed from children of the aristocracy, were taught
the highest of ideals, trained in combat, strategy, arts and performances and
anything else required. The Hwarang were thought to be dissolved but instead

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SETTING

became a force to keep order amongst practitioners of magic in Korea and are
constantly policing the peninsula. A total of more than 400 individual skills
that took more than 10 years of dedicated work, effort and enlightenment to
master are said to make up the base of the Hwarang techniques. This group
grew very famous, particularly for their ways of war. The Hwarang practiced
the Hwarangdo and, because of the techniques similarities to Jujitsu and
Bushido and because the founder of Jujitsus name was Shinna Sabro (or Silla
Samrang), meaning Silla third man and because, at that time, Koreans who
moved to other countries often kept Silla as their maiden name for love of
their homeland, some believe that he was actually Korean.
The Hwarang became very powerful, particularly in military strength
and influence and because of this, the third King of Chosun, King Tae Jong,
dissolved the Hwarang. When this happened the Hwarang faded from the texts
of history. They exist to protect everyone from the events that cause belief,
mythology and superstition to manifest as reality and to punish those that
use their gift in such a way as to become a danger to themselves and others.
Using magic outside the school grounds is only allowed during emergencies
and is only then permitted. The Hwarang act in accordance with the common
and known laws everyone is already familiar with as a global community
but they also deal with serious crimes like murder when magic is involved.
If such crimes are committed using magic then the Hwarang take control of
the situation. If not, it is left to the local police force.

Places of Power

The fault lines of magic criss-cross the world and where these fault lines

intersect, and the more of them that do, the more powerful and unpredictable
the magic will be in these areas. There are many places of power in Korea,
places with many intersecting fault lines and that have rich, deep historical
roots in the minds of all Koreans. Places of power are focal points where
strange events occur, the collective unconscious is made manifest and are to
be avoided at all cost for said reasons. The places of power, and locations to
be avoided in Seoul, are:

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SETTING

Gyeongbuk Palace: One of the grandest and oldest of the palaces was
destroyed and burned down by the Japanese. When Emperor Gojungs
wife, the Empress Myeongseong was assassinated by the 56 assassins sent
by Japan, Emperor Gojung walked away from the palace and never set
foot in it againleaving it to be ransacked and destroyed. The Imperial
Family never returned to the palace again. It is located in the heart of
the old downtown of Seoul and is off limits to students, especially while
the old fortress walls of Seoul are undergoing repair.

Changdeok Palace: Unfortunately often ransacked for material


components, the Kings old secret garden there has hundreds of different
species of plants, many over 300 years old, and all closed off to all people
except those with the express permission of the King. This was also the
Palace that Yi Bangwon (later King Taejong) constructed and lived in after
he killed both his half-brothers. While vying for the throne Yi Bangwon
saw the opportunity to strike when Queen Sindeok passed away suddenly
and his father went into mourning; he stormed the palace and killed
all of his opposers as well as his two half-brothers (one of whom was
the crown prince). When King Taejo crowned his second son King, Yi
Bangwon and his elder brother began vying for power. General Pak Po,
becoming disgruntled when he was not better taken care of for helping
in the raid that saw the death of the crown prince, decided to side with
Yi Bangwons older brother and lead an army against Yi Bangwon. Yi
Bangwon defeated the army, killed General Pak Po and sent his elder
brother into exile. Fearing for his life, the second brother relinquished
the throne to Yi Bangwon who then became King Taejo. During his
reign he ransacked many Buddhist temples for their sacred possessions
and founded the royal guard and secret police. He was known for being
particularly ruthless and a practitioner of the darkest of arts. He executed
the very same supporters that put him in power to strengthen royal
authority and, to stop his in-laws from gaining power, he killed four
brothers of his own Queen as well as his own sons (later the great King
Sejong) in-laws. Changdeok Palace attracts the worst sorts of creatures
and people.

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SETTING

Deoksu Palace: The palace where the last King of Korea lived after the
Japanese invasion. It has since been used for peace talks during the Cold
War between the U.S. and Soviet Russia and is the only palace that was
not burned down when the Japanese invaded. Deoksu Palace is one of
the only places of power that has positive energy and is often used for
sanctioned rituals and school retreats while under supervision.

Gyeonhui Palace: One of the only palaces that is completely impenetrable


to the public. Only 33% was reconstructed and is visible above ground.
The King usually moved here in times of emergency and it attracts all
sorts of people who seek to delve into its dark depths in the hopes of
finding treasure and secrets from a time long lost. The site is extremely
dangerous and several students are lost every year trying to pilfer its depths.

Changgyeong Palace: During the Japanese occupation a camp, zoo,


museum and a botanical garden (the biggest one is Asia at the time)
was built on the palace site. The Japanese were using the zoo, museum
and gardens as an area for scientific research and as a site for the testing
of the black arts. Ancient artifacts and deadly magic crossed. Tests and
experiments with rare and dangerous animals as evidence continues to
be uncovered. Animals and artifacts twisted by malice and magical energy
continue to surface from the palace and the palace is under constant guard.
There are other places of power that people often gravitate towhether

they are magicians or not. The original site of the Wongak Temple in Tapgol
Park near Itaewon was originally destroyed because of oppressive Buddhist
policies but became a symbol of the Independence movement. There is a
tower that has the 1,762 word declaration of Independence inscribed on
it in English and Korean alongside statues of leaders of the movement and
offers protection in the form of wards for those that need a place of safety.

Hwangudan Altar and Gate was originally built for the Emperor of
the Great Han Empire and it was there he made offerings to the Lord
of Heaven. Though partially destroyed, the altar, small gates and stone
drums remain. This is an important site for binding and banishment but
remains a working gate. The Hwangudan Alter and Gate is off-limits to
students when not under supervision.

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SETTING

Busan, the port city to the South and second largest city in Korea, is off
limits to students this year. There have been reports of certain entities and
monsters being sighted near Sorok Island where the Japanese were conducting
experiments on a leper colony they established there. The history of the island
and the treatment of the lepers by the Japanese and warden of the facility
make the area highly susceptible to vengeful spirits, among other things. In
addition, Dokdo Island is off limits for reasons that cannot be made known
to students at this time.
Graveyards , especially older ones like Jongmyo Shrine where all the
royal ancestors are enshrined and memorial services for deceased King and
Queens are held is also off limits to students. Eighty-three spirit tablets are
in the main hall and the Hall of Eternal Peace. The ceremonies were once
held by the King himself and were to welcome, entertain and then send off
the spirits five times a year but the rites are now only held once a year on
the first Sunday of May. The place radiates power both good and bad and
the royal families are constantly trying to contact our world for reasons we
cannot hope to fathom. They wish to be a part of the world again and are
constantly seeking influence over it.
Bosingak Bell Towers bell used to be rung when the citys gates were
opened and closed. Thirty-three times for the thirty-three heavens at 4:00
am and twenty-eight times for the twenty-eight constellations at 7 pm. Now
the bell is only rung on one day: 33 times on New Years Eve. The bell was
moved to the National Museum where it is now kept under lock and key but
the administration has been made aware of a student rite of passage which
entails the ringing of the bell at 4 am. This practice and tradition is far too
dangerous and cannot be tolerated. Any students caught participating in such
dangerous affairs face immediate expulsion.

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SETTING

Beasts of the Wild

by Professor Makar

There are some creatures that originate from and make their home in

Korea. While the school itself is well-protected from the creatures and magical
beasts that roam the wild beyond the school walls, a working knowledge of
some of these things is both necessary and beneficial to your stay at HwangGung. Hwang-Gung is built near the peak of a mountain, where all the
magical fault lines of Korea converge. Here on what is simply referred to as
the mountain, the stuff of legends and myths are real, the world is in constant
flux and is a far more wondrous and dangerous place than any location on
the planet. A basic field guide for first-year students follows.

DOKKAEBI

The surrounding area is known to hold the demonic, troll-like creatures

known as the dokkaebi. They carry magical clubs that are crafted by their clan
and are extremely fond of mischievous, practical jokes. While thought to be
generally harmless in fairy tales, we at Hwang-Gung can assure you they are
anything but. They have the power of invisibility, bestowed on them by the
hats they wear. The clubs they wield grant them the power to summon any
item they require. These clubs do not actually create objects, but use powerful
magic to procure an existing item from somewhere else in the world. It is
not a rare occasion when a group of students, led by a professor of course,
are required to venture into theTwilight Forest. The forest is accessible via
the tunnel in the middle of the lake or by venturing into the mountains and
such ventures are usually to reacquire important goods or artifacts stolen
from a individuals or the schools possession.

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SETTING

What the school and faculty are careful about telling first year students
is that every year several students are lost to these excursions and so are
undertaken less and less and only if the item is of particular value. However,
students often use the Dokkaebi hunt as a rite of passage at the school.

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HAECHI

The haechi, when tamed, are amazing creatures that are most famously

used for the prevention of natural disasters and are naturally resistant to magic.
They are also extremely quick, as they are able to latch onto the past with their
large mouths and have a small degree of control over it. Being very difficult to
tame and dangerous in the wildparticularly to magiciansthese creatures
are often used to protect both Hwang-Gung College and key locations in
Seoul from natural disasters, other powerful magics or other creatures that
roam the wild, including other haechi.

The school lost most of its Haechi force mysteriously after Namdaemun
was burned down in 2008.

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GEUMIHO

Students are warned to be careful of meeting new peopleespecially

outside of the school. There are several well documented nine-tailed foxes
known to be operating in both the school and Seoul area. These creatures live
for a thousand years and have the ability to shape-shift. They often take on
the form of the opposite sex to seduce the unwary. While not always aware
or under control of themselves (there have been incidents of nine-tails being
controlled by magicians or other external forces), they are always dangerous
and crave the liver of their victims. Many of them believe that they can become
human if they eat enough human liver or heart.

I remember hearing rumors about a group of guys that stayed out past
curfew to go clubbing in Seoul. Only one of them was heard from again and he
recounted a tale of waking up to the beautiful girl he had picked up at the club
devouring his best friends liver. Only with some quick thinking, his beads and
the help of the guards once he got back was he able to survive the ordeal but
he was never the same.

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CHEOLLIMA

Cheollima are the Korean equivalent of western pegasi or unicorn but

they have wings on the ankles and are known to be able to run from one
end of the Korean peninsula to the other in one day. They are often shy and
keep to themselves but, like any wild animal, can be particularly dangerous
when frightened.

The North Koreans were always rumored to not only be holding a unicorn
against its will but that a mission to recapture it failed. Now North Korea has
plastered it all across the front page, Im sure its made the magic community
angry but I doubt its winning them any political credibility.

GWISHIN

Ghosts in Korea are by far the most well-known of all creatures

as they make themselves apparent quite often and even amongst the
general population there are a large number of people who have seen
one in some form or another. Many postulate that this is due to the
alarmingly high suicide rate in South Korea. The classes on the subject
at Hwang-Gung are well known and attract graduate research. Gwishin,
or ghosts, are classified and ordered into several different categories but
the types of ghosts most famous in Korea are known as maiden ghosts,
drowned ghosts, unmarried ghosts and dalgyal ghosts, which are ghosts
that have a featureless, egg-shaped head instead of the face of a person.

Korea has one of the highest suicide rates in the world and has a long, sad
history of invasions, massacres and deathsome students say they can feel it
as soon as they set foot in the country. Sleep paralysis is common and often
marks the presence of the supernatural.

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DRAGONS

Dragons are a diverse, long-lived species that we still do not know a lot

about as they are particularly reclusive. Korean dragons are often a force for
good in the world and are known to have control over the weather. Korean
dragons are generally known to live in large bodies of water, like Lake Meru
near our school, and many different types of dragons, including Nagas ,have
been sighted in Korea. Nagas are known to act as servants for dragons and
to be the first pious followers of the Buddha. They can purify the mind and
body and are said to have the power to grant wishes. The most famous and
greatest of all dragons is said to be a previous King of Shilla, named Munmu,
who died in 680AD but was resurrected as a great water dragon to protect
his home and lives in the Yellow Sea. Dragon lore also speaks of crystal orbs
called yeouiju, which are said to grant the holder omnipotence. Only dragons
with four claws are able to forge or possess them, however. Most dragons are
lesser dragons that look like large serpents called Imugi. Once these lesser
Imugi find or catch a yeouji falling from heaven, they are said to become
true dragons.

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One group of students thought it would be a good idea to try to charm


and follow one particular Naga back to the sacred place it is thought to live,
as they are often said to be guardians of sacred treasure. Many still believe
that after Munmus son, Sinmun died, the famous Bamboo Flute to Calm Ten
Thousand Waves which, when played, forced attackers to flee, spread plagues
to break enemy forces, summon rain to calm droughts, and had control over
wind and sea. I think that is what they were aftereither that or a yeouiju.

My professor of Dragonology believes that the dragon once thought to live


in Lake Meru is none other than the Naga King Garathe first pious follower
of the Buddha

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SETTING

BONGHWANG

The Bonghwang is a mythical bird that is now known to exist. At least

one has been sighted near the school and the Dean keeps one as well. as
both a pet and friend. The Bonghwang is said to have dominion over all
other birds, save perhaps one. It makes itself known during troubling times,
protecting those in need. It is also said to have great knowledge of all things.
The Bonghwang is made up of the beak of a rooster, the face of a swallow,
the forehead of a fowl, the neck of a snake, the breast of a goose, the back of
a tortoise, the hindquarters of a stag and the tail of a fish.

SAMJOKO

The Samjoko looks like a three-legged crow and is said to be more

powerful than all things on heaven and earth. It lives in and has the power
of the sun; very little is known about it except that is believed to have the
power of resurrection.

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SETTING

Creating the Cast


M

agicians is about more than playing just one unhappy,


dysfunctional, teenage magician whose dissatisfaction and
unhappiness with the world allows them the ability to reshape
the world by casting spells; you also play a conflict character of

another player whose sole role in the game is to stir up trouble and create
tense, effective teen drama. More than creating your protagonist, this chapter
is about creating an entire cast of characters to give a degree of depth and
intricacy to your game so as to make generating dramatic stories as easy and
intuitive as possible.

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CREATING THE CAST

Overview

First of all, you will start by creating a teenage magician, your protagonist,
whose shoes you will step into for most of the game. You wil do this by writing
down three words that describe your character, why your character is unhappy
and what they think would make them happy.
Second, you will create your mentor, a professor whose job it is to look
after you, guide you and who bestowed upon you your True Namewhich
you will also make at the same time as you detail your mentor. Magic that
can control, change or kill another magician directly can only be successfully
cast with the knowledge of that persons True Name.
Third, you will create another character, called a conflict character,
designed with the sole purpose of making your protagonists life difficult and
dramatic. You then give your conflict character to another player at the table
to play; since another player will do the same, you will also end up playing
another players conflict character in addition to your own protagonist. You
will create your conflict character by detailing who your protagonist does not
get along with and why that conflict exists between them.
Fourth, you will introduce your characters and talk as a group about
what relationships each character has with one another.
What you need to do all this is a character sheet and conflict character
sheet, along with something to write with. You will also need note cards of
some kind to make plot cards after creating the cast of characters.

The Character Sheet

Name: Your characters name is the one you would find in their passport
or on their birth certificate, though they may use a nickname.
True Name: Your characters True Name is established by either using
the names table or by coming up with your own Korean name. If someone
else finds out your True Name, they have power over youthey can cast

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CREATING THE CAST

Name

True Name

Wounds

Trust

Conditions

+
-

Favorite Spells

Justice

Safety

Three Words that Describe Me are...


Im unhappy because...
Things would be better if...

Freedom

1
2
3
4
5
Love

I dont get along with _________ because...

Self-Worth

spells that change or transform you, stop your heart or control your mind
and body. True names are kept secret and safe, and only you and your mentor,
who performed the ceremony that gave you your True Name, know of it and
perhaps one or two friends you trust with your very life. Exchanging true
names with someone is a sign of the deepest of friendships.
Drama Point categories: There are six placeholders for Drama Points
under each category of emotions. The six categories are: Self-Worth, Love,
Freedom, Justice, Safety and Trust. Whenever your protagonist is affected
negatively in one of said categories, you place the number of Drama Points
that scene earned you in the proper category. You can only have a maximum of
5 Drama Points in any one category and topping a category off with 5 points
has consequences that are discussed on Page 78 in the Drama Turns section.
Wounds: Wounds detail how much physical trauma your characters
body can take before it begins to shut down and then, ultimately, die. As
wounds are incurred, your character becomes less agile and able to act and,
after sustaining 6 wounds, they die.
Conditions: Conditions detail any advantages or disadvantages, physical
or mental, your character currently has; whether they are abnormally fast,
slow, have protection, etc.
The three words that describe me best are is left open for you to
fill in the three words that best describe your character in order to flesh out
your characters personality.
I am unhappy because is left open to detail the reason why your
character is unhappy and, ultimately, the reason they are able to use magic.
Things would be better if is left open to detail your characters
current motivations and what they think would make them a happier person.
My favorite spells are is left open for you to fill in a few spells youve
come up with in case you need to let loose a few signature spells should the
occasion arise.
I dont get along withbecause is left open for you to fill in your
conflict character and the reason for conflict between you.
Everything on your character sheet is for ease of reference. The sentences
are there to lead you through character creation, so have your sheet out and
fill in the sentences as the section Brainstorming the Cast walks you through
character creation.

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CREATING THE CAST

Conflict Character Cards

Name: the name by which everyone calls and refers to your conflict
character.
True Name: left blank until such a time, if any, it becomes known.
I dont get along with [conflict characters name] because is left open

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CREATING THE CAST

I dont get along with _________________________ because...

True Name

Name

to to fill in your conflict character and to detail their relationship and conflict.

Brainstorming the Cast

What do you think of when you hear teenage drama? Social


awkwardness, angst, heartache and pining and everything else that comes
with being a teenager is what you should keep in mind when creating the cast
for your game. Your characters do not have to be likablethey can be bitter,
competitive and narcissistic because more drama is always betteras long
as you keep the drama in the game. Your cast will consist of one protagonist,
one conflict character, and one mentor for each player at the table. Character
interaction is geared towards generating the kind of drama that will affect
your protagonist negatively because whenever this happens you earn Drama
Points, which you then use later to cast spells, drive the story and make cool
things happen.

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CREATING THE CAST

Your Protagonist

Every character in the game is the protagonist of their own storyyour


character is a student at a school for magic. Your protagonists life is full of
drama because they are in the throes of the awkwardness, confusion and
angst that most teenagers go through. In order for you to better understand
and take on the role of your protagonist, you first have to form a concept and
personality of the character in your mind. Heres how to do that.

Write three things about or words that describe your protagonist and
his name.
EXA M P L E
My character, Richard, is trusting, always looking for acceptance
and paranoid. I chose to write down words that will make it easy for
Richard to get into trouble. Every single thing on that list is not going
to set Richard up on the popularity track but it will be a great source of
inspiration for when he acts, or how he behaves and it will be easy to
put him in difficult spots.
Adam, another player, writes down that his character, Patrick, has a
short temper, is a know-it-all and loves spending time in the library.
Grace, the last player, writes that Anna is popular, anorexic and
insufferably bubbly.

Your True Name and Mentor

Your first day of school involves your protagonist being assigned a mentor,

whom you meet and who then performs a magic ritual on you that reveals
your True Name. True Names are different from the name your protagonist
was given by their parents or the nicknames other people call your protagonist
by. Knowing someones True Name gives you power over them and so are
closely guarded secrets. Having a True Name means being able to harm or
help the person with greater ease, being able to control them, have them do
your bidding and forces them to come when called.

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CREATING THE CAST

When you start a game of Magicians, only you and your mentor know
your True Name. You do not know your mentors True Name. Your True Name
is chosen as per your host country, so your mentor gives you a Korean name.
You can either come up with a Korean name yourself,(which consists of three
syllables, the family name always coming first), or you can use the following
chart to come up with a name easily and quickly. The chart corresponds to your
date of birth; use the chart for your birth year for your protagonists Korean
family nameuse only the last number of your birth year, the month of your
birth for the first syllable and the day of your birth for the second syllable of
your protagonists True Name.

GOTCHA!
Finding out what someones True Name is should never be a matter
of finding out when they were born. This table is just a quick, easy
way to come up with a True Name without having to think or do any
research.

FAMILY NAME TABLE


LAST NUMBER
OF BIRTH YEAR
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

56

FAMILY NAME

(Bak) [essence, nature]


(Kim) [gold]
(Jo) [to achieve]
(Chuey) [to be the best]
(Eem) [bright, warm]
(Gang) [strong]
(Han) [Korea]
(Ee) [plum tree]
(Yoon) [to rule]
(Jung) [lawful, proper]

CREATING THE CAST

First Name First Syllable Table


MONTH OF
BIRTH
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December

57

FIRST SYLLABLE

(Yong) [courage]
(Ji) [to know/realize]
(Je) [to be young]
(Hye) [love/kindness]
(Dong) [east]
(Sang) [first]
(Ha) [summer]
(Hyo) [filial duty]
(Su) [water]
(Eun) [silver, money]
(Hyun) [virtuous]
(Rae) [to come/return]

CREATING THE CAST

FIRST NAME SECOND SYLLABLE TABLE


DAY OF BIRTH

SECOND SYLLABLE

(Hwa) [fire]
(Oo) [rain]
(Joon) [to be exceptional]
(Hee) [hope]
(Gyo) [to teach]
(Gyung) [honor, respect]
(Ook) [to strive, endeavor]
(Jin) [truth]
(Jae) [to have talent, skill]
(Hoon) [to guide, lead]
(Ra) [to start, begin]
(Bin) [humble]
(Sawn) [to be pretty/ good-looking]
(Ree) [to govern/rule]
(Su) [skill, ability]
(Rim) [to confront/face]
(Ah) [stubbornness]
(Ae) [love]
(Neul) [wealth/riches]
(Moon) [to listen, realize]
(Een) [to know]
(Mi) [beauty]
(Gee) [energy, spirit]
(Sang) [honorable]
(Byung) [soldier]
(Sawk) [precious, dear]
(Gawn) [strong, firm]
(Yoo) [scholar, student]
(Oong) [to be courageous]
(Won) [to be the first/beginning, the root]
(Sawp) [to control/rule]

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31

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CREATING THE CAST

Write down your protagonists True Name.


EXA M P L E
Richards mentor is Professor Canopy, the head nurse who is,
unfortunately, quite fed up with him. I was born on July 7th, 1985 so his
True Name is.
Patricks mentor is Professor Filch, who also happens to be the
headmaster. He has taken an interest in Patrick, which makes other
students jealouscoupled with him being a know-it-all. He is often the
butt of a joke, which can be bad since Patrick has a short temper. Adam
was born on March 18th, 1980 so Patricks True Name is.
Annas mentor is Professor Candor, who teaches classes on Wards and
Defense. Professor Candor is distant and is a bit of an oddball so Anna
tries not to spend too much time around him. Grace was born January
4th, 1988 so Annas True Name is.

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CREATING THE CAST

Your Conflict Character

In addition to playing your protagonist, you will also play a character


that will be constantly generating and involved in the conflict surrounding
another protagonist, called a conflict character.

Write a little bit about another character in the game that your character
has the most conflict with (whether it be another protagonist or otherwise).

Write down the conflict and a bit about why that character clashes
with your protagonist on a conflict character card and give it to another
player.
EXA M P L E
Richards conflict character is the school nurse, Ms. Canopy, who has
long since run out of patience for Richard since he is sent to her several
times a day or shows up often claiming to need calming spells. She has
lost all pity she had for the boy and assumes that he was coddled too
much as a boy and raised with a silver-spoon in his mouth.
Patricks conflict character is Anna. Patrick has a huge crush on her,
feels that only he really knows her and that she is very unhappy but Anna
is only using him to get her homework done or for errands and favors
and has no romantic interest in him at all.
Annas conflict character is Professor Digsby, her Practical Magic
teacher. The teacher believes that she is smart and that she should apply
herself and so is trying to mentor her but its not going well. Anna resents
the unwanted help and attention and wishes to bask in her newfound
popularity (she had no friends before coming to Hwang-Gung).

You can use the sentences on the character sheet to write down, in one
or two concise sentences, why the protagonist and their conflict character
do not get along.
Each person should have their own character sheet and at least one other
conflict character given to them by another player. Conflict character cards
should have a description on them about why that character clashes with a
protagonist and a short description of that character. Upon receiving a card,

60

CREATING THE CAST

you are free to add as many additional details to it as you want at any time.
In fact, as scenes play out you should feel free to flesh out the character and
their relationships with other characters as well.
EXA M P L E
I give my conflict character to Adam, Adam gives his conflict character
to Grace, since shes playing Anna, and Grace gives her conflict character
to me.

Write down what makes your character unhappy in one concise


sentence, what your wound is.
What is it that makes you unhappy, what fuels your magic? Relating it

to one of the negative emotions categories on your character sheet is an easy


way to come up with a root for their unhappiness.
EXA M P L E
Richard is paranoid and his paranoia is reinforced by bad things
happening to him throughout his life. He is constantly afraid that he
might wake up one day and not be able to cast magic.
Patricks wound stems from being neglected by his family. While he
loves books and being in quiet places, he often acts out to get attention
and is quick to anger when he doesnt receive it.
Annas wound stems from her parents passing away when she was
young. She was an orphan and bounced around the system for a long
time, she never felt like she fit in anywhere until she got to Hwang-Gung.

Write down your characters want.


A protagonists need or want works best when tied to their woundwhen

the wound is the origin of the want.


EXA M P L E
Richard wants to become a Magician so powerful that he need not
fear anything in the world ever again.
Patrick wants everyones approval and for Anna to see that no one
understands her like he does.
Anna wants to stay on top, her popularity and fitting-in is the most
important thing to her.

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CREATING THE CAST

Tying Your Main


Cast Together

Now that you have your main cast of characters, it is important that
all the characters have opinions on and interact with other cast members
especially other protagonists. How your protagonist feels about the other
players protagonists and towards other characters, like his or her conflict
character, is important to driving the story forward and for when you begin
telling a story. If the protagonists have no reason to encounter or never interact
with other protagonists, there is not going to be a lot of energy and very little
game dynamic going on at the table.

Write down a sentence about how your character sees the other
protagonists and what they think of them.
EXA M P L E
Richard doesnt pay much attention to Patrick, but he resents Anna
and her popularity. Patrick thinks Richard is worse off than him, pities
him and thinks Anna is secretly very unhappy so tries to help her. Anna
knows of Richard because of his paranoia sometimes raising issues in
class and usually uses Patrick to do her homework for her, enjoys the
attention she gets from him and everybody else.

Fleshing Out Other Supporting Characters

Most game sessions will see your protagonist and cast of characters playing

out their dramas, fighting fantastic forces and doing other adventurous things
at or near the school, so coming up with some other characters to add to the
cast can really help to flesh out the school. You do not need to write anything
down but talk as a group about some of the cliques that are at the school and
how the students being able to cast magic might affect the school experience,
how it might change up the typical groups or what teenagers might do and
how they would solve their problems if they were able to cast magic.

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CREATING THE CAST

That ambitious cheerleader girl who always wanted to be beautiful can


now really become beautiful, even if only by an illusion. The girl that nobody
noticed may literally now be invisible all the time. Those competitive teachers
can now try anything to have their class win competitions. The jocks, bullies,
overachievers, nerds, bookworms, flirts, preps, emos, drama queens, Goths,
and misfits are still very much a part of school life so draw on what you know
but try to add a magical spin on it whenever possible.

Finishing Up

Before you move on to other chapters of the book and start playing a
game make sure you familiarize yourself with the rest of your character sheet.
In addition, when you first start playing you should:

Not have any wounds (out of six) marked.

Not have any conditions marked.

Begin play with as many Drama Points as there are players; these points
can be put into any category you see fit.

Have all the sentences filled in on your character sheet.

DRAMA POINT CATEGORIES


The Drama Point categories can be used as an interesting, fun way
to gauge how your character is feeling. If you put your Drama Points
into the trust category perhaps your character is feeling untrusting,
if they have Points in the freedom category maybe they are feeling
cooped up or feel like they cannot express themselves.

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64

CREATING THE CAST

Playing a Session
O

nce you have got your cast characters ready to go, all you need to
do is set up the story elements before you can start the game and
jump into the roles of your characters. There are two types of turns
in Magicians Drama turns and Casting turns and your goal, as a

player, is different in each one.


Drama turns are all about getting Drama Points so that you can use

them later in Casting Turns. CastingTurns are when you use Drama Points
to cast spells and advance the story. Magicians uses plot cards, on which you
will write down cool ideas you would like to see in the game. They are used
during Casting Turns by the Negotiator and help tell fun, unpredictable and
collaborative stories.

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PLAYING A SESSION

Overview

Before starting the game, you and the rest of the players will need to have
three blank index cards each, a character sheet and a conflict character card
along with something to write on them with. Before writing anything down,
you will come up with a pitch for that game sessionan idea or theme for
the game session you are about to play.
With that pitch in mind, you and the rest of the players will write down
cool places, monsters,characters or items that you want to see become key
plot elements on these cards. These cards are called plot cards and are entire
adventures distilled down into several key plot elements.
Once you have a stack of cards ready to go, you will take turns framing
scenes to tell stories that either put your character into dramatic situations
to earn Drama Points, called Drama Turns, or scenes in which you use the
plot cards to add to the story and where you and the other players cast spells
by spending Drama Points to advance the plot, called Casting Turns.
There is a special role that each player takes on several times a game,
called the Negotiator. The role of the Negotiator is to facilitate gameplay and
to make sure that there is always interesting consequences for failure. The
role of the Negotiator is never held by the same person for the entire session.
Every round, after each player has taken a turn earning Drama Points, the
role of Negotiator changes. This ensures that everyone gets a chance to add
to the overarching plot and keeps the story unpredictable and interesting.
A scene will end after a player has either received Drama Points for
creating drama and tension in their protagonists life (on a drama turn) or
after they have added to the story by drawing a plot card and framing a scene
that invites players to use their Drama Points by casting spells in order to
advance the plot. Once all of the cards in the deck have been used to advance
the story and they have all been discarded, the game session is concluded.
More about magic and being a Magician can be found in Chapter 5 and
rules for the actual usage and casting of magic in Chapters 6. This chapter
focuses solely on how to set up, play and conclude a game session.

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PLAYING A SESSION

Starting the Game

When starting a game of Magicians there are two things you need to
set-up before you jump in, start roleplaying and start casting spells. The first
thing is the pitcha single, concise, evocative sentence that relays to the other
players what you want the game session to be about. The second thing you
need is a pack of index cards on which you write down plot elements that
will make for an engaging, fun and exciting adventure based on the initial
pitch you and the group came up with.

The Pitch

Make sure you and every other player has three index cards in front of

them along with their character sheet and a conflict character card. Write
down a single, evocative sentence that either has an idea or theme in it which
would make for a great story for everyone at the tablethis is your pitch for
the game session.
Read your sentence aloud to the group and listen to the other players
as they give you their pitch. Tell the group what is happening in the school
that you and your characters will eventually become a part of. Vote on the
coolest idea as a group or perhaps merge some similar ideas into one. The idea
should not be too specific ideas like a monster is on the loose, students
are disappearing, a professor is found killed or even final exams and next
semester course placements are coming up are all interesting ideas that are
suitably vague enough to require a lot of exploration. game
When deciding on a pitch, choose one that your characters will have an
interest or passion in developing. Remember that everyone is the protagonist of
their own story so make sure your pitch leaves room for everyone at the table
and can incorporate the entire cast of characters. Discovering information and
figuring out what is happening is usually the first step in a game of Magicians
because there are a lot of cards on the table that have yet to be revealed and
you only know what you wrote on your own cards.

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PLAYING A SESSION

Incorporating a strange, mysterious or intriguing element in your pitch


works well with plot cards to increase dramatic tension. Themes are great to
explore in games, a lot of fun games have come out of taking typical teen issues
and putting a magical spin on them. Issues that teenagers face everyday or are
just starting to think about for the first time like teen pregnancy, depression,
heartbreak, and pressure can be fun to incorporate in your pitch. Troubled
teens, issues about body image and self-esteem, balancing studying and play,
giving up their senior year and previous life to come to a new, foreign country,
peer pressure, physical and emotional health, searching for role-models are
all issues that you might like to deal with in-game and explore from a slightly
different perspective. Being a teenager is about doing everything for the
first time, add magic into the mix and there is a lot of fun topics to explore
alongside an exciting adventure.
After every player has given their pitch, decide on one as a group that
you want to use for that session. You may be able to combine a couple pitches
into one if they have similar ideas or themes but keep one cohesive idea or
theme in mind when choosing a pitch as it will help focus the story. You can
always explore other interesting pitches in future game sessions.
EXA M P L E
I want to play a game where there is a mystery to solve at the school
so I decide on a simple pitch: a murder mystery at the school.
Perry comes up with a spell is on the loose that is petrifying anyone
that gets in its way, no one knows how to stop it.
Grace comes up with exams are coming up and a new exchange
student from another magic school in France gets transferred to our class.
After some deliberation we decide that the murder mystery is wide
enough that it can incorporate both Perry and Graces ideas into the
story as they can use their plot cards to bring those ideas into the game
if they so choose.

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PLAYING A SESSION

Plot Cards

Take out your pen or pencil and the index cards you brought with you
these are your plot cards and will be drawn by the Negotiator on their
turn. Whenever a plot card is drawn, the element on the card becomes the
focal point for that scene and becomes an integral part of advancing the story.
Here is how to write up your set of plot cards.

On one card, write down the name of a character, faction or organization.


A character could be an existing conflict character, a protagonist, or a

non-player character like the headmaster of the school, or even a character


not yet introduced. A faction or organization could be an established group,
perhaps of students like goths or healers or it could be a new, interesting
faction that people are unfamiliar with like The Council or The Cult of
the Goddess.
EXA M P L E
Grace uses one of her plot cards to write down foreign exchange
student to bring in the idea she had earlier into the game.

On a second card, write down the name of an object, challenge or


location.
An object could be something known to be magical like Ring of

Protection, something mundane like Knife with blackened blood on the


hilt, A love letter or locker key. A challenge could be a puzzle or something
that requires further investigation like a tile, possibly from the roof or a
string of words, written in an ancient language. A location is a key place that
will become important to the narrative in some way, whether it is known to
the players yet or not, like Vultures Peak or the girls dormitory.
EXA M P L E
To play up the murder mystery aspect of the story, I write down
suspicious note written by headmaster as my object on one of my
plot cards.

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PLAYING A SESSION

On the last card, write down a threat, villain, or monster.


A threat is something, whether it is sentient or not, that is a danger

to the cast of characters. It could be actively pursuing them and wishing


them harm, like a monster or creature preying on students, or it could be
something that by its very existence does harm to the cast or to something
the cast of characters cares about, like an airborne disease, spell gone loose
or mindless spirit.
EXA M P L E
Perry decides to write down spell on the loose for his threat on one
of his plot cards to incorporate his earlier idea into the plot.

Assigning Points

All cards require a point value be assigned to them, this acts both as a

pacing mechanic for the overall story of the game and as a means to tell when
a plot card element has been resolved and can be discarded. The number
of points you assign a card also indicates how many Drama Points must be
spent in a scene where the Negotiator has framed a casting scene that uses
that card. Once the number of points on a card is reached, its place in the
narrative is cemented and the card can be discarded.
EXA M P L E
For example, if I write a 3 on my suspicious note written by headmaster
card that signifies that players must spend 3 Drama Points during a turn
when that card is drawn in order for that cards place in the narrative to
be cemented, narrated by the Negotiator and then discarded.
The number of points you choose to assign to each card should vary on
how long you want to play a session (Note: 1 point for every person at the
table makes for an easily resolved scene as everyone gets one action on
every casting turn. A player may choose to spend 3 points when casting a
spell, that one spell would resolve the card entirely. Likewise, a player may
choose to not spend any points on their turn by not casting any spells).
Cards do not have to be resolved in one turn, if a card has a higher number
of points assigned to it, it just means that it will take more time before the
cards place in the narrative becomes known, resolved and before the card
is discarded. If no one spends points during a scene then the card is left
on the table, left open for people to use on their turns if they so desire.

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PLAYING A SESSION

Point Values and Threats

When you assign a point value to a threat you do more than signify how

many Drama Points must be spent in a scene involving that threat for it to be
resolved and the card discarded; the number of points assigned also dictates
how dangerous a threat it is to the cast of characters.
The total number of points divided by two, round up, is the amount of
wounds a threat can dish out, total, to the cast of characters. If a threat is
assigned 12 points then it can deal up to 6 wounds for every turn in a scene
whether it is to one character or spread out among several cast members. It
could deal 6 wounds in one attackit could do 2 attacks that deal 3 wounds
each per round or it could have special attacks that deal ongoing wound or
other special effects.
For your first game, you will want to keep it simple. Write down what
the threat is and then give it a total of 6 points. Then, write down in what
way the threat deals out wounds - give it one attack that deals 3 wounds. You
might write Claws: 3 wounds or fire breath: 3 wounds depending on what
the threat is. It does not always have to do physical harma creature could
impose a condition like blind or poisoned or any number of interesting
things but you will read about that later, in Chapter 10.
If you are feeling confident, here are the rules for creating a threat like
you will once you have played a few more games. First, assign the threat a
number of points to represent how many Drama Points players will have to
spend on the card before it is discarded. Then, divide that number in two
and round up. Use that rounded number to calculate how many wounds the
threat can deal out or what special abilities it has by subtracting points from
that rounded total like so:

For every wound the attack does, subtract a point.

For every ongoing wound it does, subtract 2 points.


EXA M P L E
If I have a threat called spell on the loose and I assign it 10 points
then it means I have 5 points to work with. If I want the spell to deal one
point of damage, with one point of ongoing damage every turn until it
is healed, I would subtract 3 points from my 5 point total1 for the point
of damage and 2 for the ongoing damage capability, leaving me with 2
points to work with.

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PLAYING A SESSION

If an attack is a 3 point physical attack that causes blindness (not a spell)


it would cost 6 points total to heal and remove the blindness condition (just
three points to dispel the blindness if it is a blindness spell however). Likewise,
a 5-point paralysis-inducing attack would require 10 points to heal and 5
points to dispel. Detailed rules for healing will be discussed later, on page 156.
However, for now, understand that the cost of healing is based on the total
point value of the attack. In the above example, for instance, the Threat has
a 3 point physical attack that causes blindness. It would cost 6 points total to
heal and remove the blindness condition. If the blindness was a spell instead,
it would only require 3 points to dispell the effect. Not all threats will only
deal physical wounds, you may have threats that are other students, teachers
or even animals that are capable of casting spells.

PLAYER MASTERY
You may be thinking that it is the Negotiators job to play out
scenes in which the threat is present and that if the threat is present
and the threat can cast magic, doesnt that mean that if Im the
Negotiator I have to cast spells. Dont I need to speak Korean to cast
spells? What do I do if I cant speak Korean, wont the threat just keep
failing to cast spells? The answer is no!
First of all - try. Magicians is about learning a language and you
have to speak it and try to do so. You can try to say it and simply
inform the table that the spell is successful because it is important
to the fiction. If the proper pronunciation for the spell is needed
type the spell out into google translate or Dragon Dictation or Naver
dictationary and have it parrot back the proper pronunciation. Always
try first though!

For threat cards that have several monsters in play, the total number
of points is divided between each monster. If the threat card has a total
of 20 points on it and there are two creatures on it then each monster
gets 10 points (and therefore 5 points worth of damage or conditiondealing can be done by each).

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For large swarms of creatures with so many creatures in play that you
couldnt divide points between them, count the entire swarm as one
entity. If you want to put a villain on your threat card and you want him
to have some minions or if you would like to have some lackeys to throw
at the characters first then you can divide up the total number of points
between the villain and his minions as you see fitthey do not have to
be divided equally. Keep in mind that the total number of points on the
card should reflect all the monsters and creatures on itif only certain
enemies get eliminated mark them off the card as you reduce the point
total when players spend their Drama Points to cast spells.
EXA M P L E
I want to have a powerful demon be the big, bad boss but I want him
to be weak. Since hes weak, he will need a lot of little demons protecting
him but I also want him to be able to do some serious damage when
it comes down to it. Out of a total of 20 points, I assign the big bad 10
points, with a psychic attack that deals five woundsone attack that can
almost kill a character. The other 10 points I divide among 10 lesser demon
protector minions for the main demon. Each of them gets 1 point and can
deal one wound per turn making the threat a really deadly encounter for
the cast of characters if they were to face them all directly.

Remember that if the threat does damage by casting spells, you have
to write down the spell on the card in advance using whatever system you
are usingnoun and verb (Prodigy, Apprentice) or full sentence (Master).
The Negotiator does not have to correctly pronounce the words of a spell
in order to have a Threat use the spell, but it might be a good idea to avoid
complicated magic for the first few games while all of the players get used
to the other parts of the game system. See Chapter 6 on casting spells for
how to come up with a spell for the appropriate magic system and for more
information on threats, see Chapter 10.

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EXA M P L E
I want the demons psychic attack to be magical in nature, so I write
down psychic trauma spell5 wounds and, since we are using the Prodigy
magic system, I choose

for my noun, and for my

verb, meaning damage living thing.

Once everyone has finished writing on their cards and have assigned
point values to each of them, they are all placed face-down in the middle and
shuffled together to make a deck.

YOUR FIRST FEW GAMES


For your first few games you will want to keep your threats simple.
Give all the threats you come up with 6 points total and one attack
that deals 3 wounds. After you play a few games and get an idea
about how the number of points on a card will affect the pace of the
game, read about threats again in Chapter 10 and start adding more
dynamic threats to your game.

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The First Session


and Ongoing Play

When you first start playing Magicians, create your cast of characters
and prepare your plot cards for starting a game session you will not have any
previous game sessions under your belt with that cast of characters or any
previously stories told. After you have completed your first game session,
when all the plot cards you prepared have been narrated and discarded and
after players have spent their Drama Points on oveercoming them, you will
have an established world, cast of characters and setting with which to base
your next game sessions on.
What works really well about the use of plot cards is that it allows you
to focus the story on what you want to have happen and what plot elements
you want to see brought out in the fiction. Just because you have resolved
a plot card in a previous game session does not mean you cannot bring it
back in the next sessionthe players, along with the cast of characters they
are playing, will have a totally different context with which to reintroduce
that plot element and if you had fun with it then other players probably did
too. Not only that, but you get to narrate your own scenes both on drama
turns and casting turns and you get the chance to introduce story either
via narration or by putting it down on your plot cards each game session.
Campaign play works well this way because you get to reevaluate what plot
elements are important, what should stay resolved and what keeps the story
fresh and exciting. That reevaluation, coupled with introducing new plot
card elements every game session guarantees that everyone at the table will
be playing the game they want to play every session.

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Rounds of Play

The number of rounds a game consists of will vary on how many players
there are and how many points you assign to your plot cards. A lower point
value assigned to cards will mean they are easily resolved in the same scene
they are introduced, whereas cards with higher point values can will most
likely not be resolved until later in the game. A round is defined as the number
of turns it takes for play to make it around the table to the Negotiator.

Step 1: A Casting Turn. Play will start off with a Casting Turn in which
the Negotiator will draw a card from the deck, use the element on
the plot card to frame a scene, then ask the players what they do. The
Negotiator will be chosen at random at the start of the game and given
a token to signify their role as Negotiator for that round of play. Each
player will take a turn and then the card will either be discarded (if its
points are reduced to zero) or placed face-up on the table (if it still has
some points remaining).

Step 2: A Drama Turn. After the initial casting turn, the Negotiator
token will be passed to the right and play will continue to the left of the
player who just narrated the Casting Scene. The next player then takes
a drama turn in order to try and accrue Drama Points for use in future
Casting Scenes.

Step 3: Play continues to the left, the Negotiator duties circle to the
right with each player framing a Drama Turn in order to build up their
cache of Drama Points.

Step 4: The Final Turn of the Round. Once play reaches the Negotiator,
the Negotiator will narrate a Casting Turn by using a plot card to frame
a scene in which players use their Drama Points to reduce the number
of points on the card to advance the story. Once each player has taken a
turn the card will either be discarded or placed face-up on the table. Once
the Negotiator token moves to the right, one round of play is concluded
and a new round of play will start with a new Negotiator.

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Scene Framing

To frame a scene, start with a general overview of what you want to have
happen in that scene (think it as if you were a movie director, explaining the
scene and roles of the characters to the people at the table). Begin by telling
the table what kind of scene this will beis the scene going to affect your
protagonists self-worth? Their freedom?, Tell the group in what way this
scene will earn characters Drama Points.
Next, state the conflict that is going to occur that will threaten that
aspect of your protagonist. At the very least the scene should have both your
character and your conflict character in it.
Start with where the scene is taking place. What characters are in the scene,
where are they, what are they doing. Scenes can be added to and fleshed out
by anyone and everyone at the table. Ask for help framing a scene if you are
having trouble coming up with something. Give suggestions and collaborate.
Once you have established the broad strokes of who is in the scene, what
they are doing and where they are, start filling in character roles. You always
play both the roles of your protagonist and any conflict character that was
given to you and you always have full authority over those charactersno one
else can dictate what those characters are doing or thinking but you (note:
Be open to suggestions and advice).
Other characters that appear in scenes are under control of whoever
framed the scene. If you do not have a character in a scene then try to either
inject a character of yours into it with a suggestion or take on the role of a
character in the scene that does not have a player behind them.
Once all the pieces are set, action is essentially said by the scene framer,
everyone gets in character, and the characters in the scene begin playing
out the scene. Once the scene framer is satisfied that the scene is over, it
endsthe conflict in the scene has been resolved, tension has been built up;
Drama Points have been earned, etc. When the point of the scene is resolved,
the scene ends and play continues to the left. Any scenes that require the

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resolution of conflict, the action of a character with no player behind them,


rules-arbitration or negotiation of failure are handled by whoever has the
Negotiator token during that scene.
Remember that scenes do not need to happen right after one another, in
a linear and-then-this-happened fashion. A player or Negotiator may choose
to frame their scene as a flashback or further in the future, between events
that have occurred, will occur later on in the story or is even a semester,
month or year after events that have just taken place if it jives with the story
and the group.

The First Scene

The first scene of a game is usually the most difficult so it is a good idea

to keep it broad. As if the game session were a television show, introduce the
session pitch in a vague, mysterious way that leaves a lot of room for future
storytelling. Do not feel pressured to be specific in the beginning since the
ideas and topics introduced in the beginning can always be cemented or
discarded later as play unfolds. Really, you can do no wronguse the first
scene to give the table an idea of what the main idea of the story is and to
introduce the element on the plot card.
Start off with very little information about the element on the plot card
as players have to earn more information to find its place in the narrative by
spending Drama Points and casting spells. As players spend Drama Points, use
the total point number on the card as a gauge for how much information to
giveif the card has a total of two points then spending one point should get
them about half-way toward resolving that card and half of the information
about its place in the narrative according to your view of the story at that
moment. If the card has 20 points then only hint at certain things, or put it
behind a series of obstacles that the players must get through in order to find
it or get information about it. Maybe the Cast finds out about a mysterious
magical ring that is worth 20 points so you tell the players that rumors are
circulating and that there is a magic ring deep within the Twilight Forest
because you know you can set up obstacles that will require them using lots
of Drama Points and casting spells to get into the Twilight Forest and to the
ring (if it is even there at all).

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Bear in mind that with high number cards you rarely have to worry
about having its place in the narrative figured out from the very beginning
as the card will not be resolved for several turns. Throw out some tantalizing
information that other Negotiators can use later on when wrapping up and
resolving that card.

Drama Turns

When it is your turn and you do not have the Negotiator token, you take
a Drama Turn. During a Drama Turn you can frame any kind of scene you
want but your protagonist should be involved in it in some way with room
for as many other players as possible in the scene as well. If a scene you want
to frame does not come to mind, think of a scene that will earn you Drama
Points. Even though Drama Points are earned by sustaining emotional trauma
or generating teenage drama, that does not mean that all scenes have to earn
you Drama Points or have traumatic incidents. Take the time to build-up and
show the relationship between characters and perhaps set your protagonist
up for emotional fallout later on.
If another player needs Drama Points or you are getting too close to the
five point maximum for comfort in a certain category, you may want to have
a breakdown scene to transfer Drama Points to another character or you may
wish to cast a spell in order to progress the story, develop characters, or just
for the sake of narrating a cool scene. Player scenes can incorporate any open
cards on the table into scenes as well. Therefore it is possible for open cards
on the table to be resolved on a players turn, but the scene and narrative is
always resolved by the player whos turn it is rather than the Negotiatorif
a player chooses to incorporate a card and it is resolved, it is up to the player
to narrate and resolve the cards place in the narrative. It is possible to narrate
a scene in which points are both spent on open cards on the table as well as
one where Drama Points are acquired.

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Drama Turn Advice

If you have trouble thinking of a way to get Drama Points look to the

drama point categories on your character sheet and look at the possible ways
you can inflict an emotional injury or increase the drama in a certain facet
of your protagonists life. The categories of emotions that can be affected
negatively in some way so as to earn you Drama Points are: Self-Worth, Love,
Freedom, Justice, Safety and Trust.
Ask other players for help or ideas and think of high school and all the
number of things teenagers struggle with during that time in their lives. The
conflict characters made during character creation and handed to another
player are designed for these kinds of scenes, frame a scene in which your
conflict character and your protagonist come into conflict.

Casting Turns

When it is your turn and you have the Negotiator token, you take a
Casting Turn. On a Casting Turn you add to the overarching narrative and
introduce more conflict into the story. Drama Turns are usually about your
protagonist and their conflict character. Casting Turns are about the big
overarching storylines that affect everyone. Just because you are taking a
casting turn does not mean your character can not be involved in a scene, it
just means that you have the additional responsibility of the meta-narrative
(what is going on behind the scenes) or whatever narrative thread is currently
underway during Casting turns. If you are taking a Casting turn then you are
the Negotiator as well, so you also oversee conflict resolution, negotiate the
stakes for failure with other players and play characters that are not controlled
by any other player when needed.
Your goal is to bring the world around the players to life, to fill it with
interesting characters and to engage them with challenges. Draw a plot card
as soon as you receive the Negotiator token so that you can prepare and think
about how you want to incorporate that card into the plot. You should not
feel like it is your job to make the players lose or to punish them or mess
with the stories they want to tell. Present scenarios in which they need to use
the Drama Points they have been building up on Drama turns to cast spells.

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Casting Turn Advice

The bigger the threat, the more time should be spent to build on, hint

at or foreshadow the threat. A good rule of thumb is one similar to players


building up Drama Pointsthe more points, the more build-up scenes need
to take place before letting the threat loose on the players. This also lets you
to work in plots behind the scenes.
For every five wounds a threat can deal, a build-up scene should be framed
before the threat comes into direct conflict with a players protagonist. Think
of the game session like a TV episodeyou can introduce stuff off-screen
without having any players in the scene. Do not be afraid of using scenes to
build-up tension as players can still use their turns to cast spells to find out
information or do other things.

(Thre at) 

Nin e- Ta iled Fo x
Cla w Attac k: 2 Wo und s (2pts)
Bite Attac k: 1 Wo und , On goi

Ta il Attac k: 1 Wo und (1pt )

12 pts

ng (3pts)

EXAMPL E
Perry draws a card for his Casting Turn coming up in order to prepare.
Its a threat card that says Nine-tailed Fox has a point value of 6 and
says claw attack: 2 wounds, bite attack: 1 wound, 1 ongoing, tail attack:
1 wound. Since the threat has the potential to deal 6 wounds per scene
(12 points, divided by two), Perry will use his upcoming scene to first
introduce the fox before coming at the cast of characters head on for a
fight. He decides to give hints that a nine-tailed fox is around and to give
players a chance to reduce its points by casting spells to find information
about it before throwing the threat directly at them.
On his turn, he says You all are studying in class when you hear a
shriek coming from the dormitory, the professor quickly launches into
a short, precise Finnish chant and then slams her hand against the wall.

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The whiteboard glosses over like a mirror and you see, on the board
in front of you, as if looking through someone elses eyes, the bloody
body of Billy-John, receiver for the team football team laying in a pool
of blood with a large hole in his stomach, as if something had reached
in and pulled something out of him. What do you do?

Look at the card you drew from the deck and use whatever is on that card
to frame a scene. If there were cards drawn previously then there should already
be an overarching story forming. Think about what has already happened
in the story and think about how your card might be incorporated into it.
EXA M P L E
Rather than casting spells on their turn, the players decide together
that they are too shocked to do anything and decide to use the scene
to rake in some Drama Points to put in their Safety category as seeing a
fellow student murdered on campus, in the dorms they lived in is pretty
traumatic and makes them feel decidedly unsafe. Perry says alright, if no
one has any spells theyd like to cast, your Professor gasps in horror and
apologizes to the class for being so rash as she rubs out the spell with
an eraser. She tells you all to stay put while she goes to find out what
has happened, looking pale and shaky.
Perry places the card for the Nine-Tailed Fox on the table, face up
for everyone to see so that anyone can now tag that card in a scene by
bringing the element into their scene, whether it they do so in a Casting
Turn or a Drama Turn. If a player chooses to tag it in their Drama Turn
and it is resolved, it is up to that player to narrate the element on the
card being resolved in the story.

Look at the number of points on the card as wellthat is the number of


points the players must spend in order to get more information about how
it fits into the narrative and plot. Frame the scene and have the players take
one turn eachask them what they do. After everyone has either taken one
action or told you what their character does, the Casting Turn ends.

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EXA M P L E
Perry notes that the card has 12 points; If each of the characters had
decided to use Drama Points instead to cast spells they would not only
get the Drama Points from their emotional trauma, but all their spells
would go to reducing the 12 point total on the spell:
Grace and I decide that our characters, Richard and Anna are shaken up
but want to figure out whats going on. Grace says that she remembers
reading something about a creature that eats organs in our text book
for Practical Magic. Perry tells her the information is readily available so
she only needs to spend one Drama Point on her clairvoyance spell (she
casts by using the noun living thing and the verb perceive) but if she
fails she will accidentally reactivate the spell that the professor negated
before she left. I tell Perry Richard is going to cast an illusion spell to
make it look like Anna and Richard are still at their desks as they slip
away for a quick minute without anyone noticing, using two points for
two separate illusions to last the scene. Perry says if the spell fails then
the spell will create a whole slew of illusions of Richard and Anna sitting
at every desk so people will know somethings going on. Either way,
whether the spells are cast successfully or not, the 12 points on the threat
card is reduced by 3 points (1 point spent on the clairvoyance spell, 2 on
the illusion spell). After the spells are cast, consequences are observed,
Perry will round out the scene by giving us some information about the
threat and its place in the story (just a little since the card still has a fair
number of points left on it) and will then pass the Negotiator token to
the right while play resumes to the left with a Drama Turn.

If it does not seem appropriate or suit the fiction of the game you, as
the Negotiatior), can opt to go another round to let players cast more spells
and expend more points to find out more information about the card, or to
continue a fight with a threat.
EXA M P L E
Its the last card for the game session and the story is ready to be
resolved, Perry decides to go the traditional monsters dead, movies
over route so declares the Dragon looks angry and doesnt look like its
going anywhereits a fight to the death! Who goes first?

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After everyone has gone once you may place the card on the table to
signify that your turn (and the casting turn is over). If the points on the card
have been reduced to zero, discard the card after doing a final narration to
cement that cards place in the narrative so that everyone knows it will not
come up again in the narrative. If the card is unresolved but the casting turns
ends, place the card face up on the table to signify that the card is fair game
for any future scenes.
Threats like monsters or villains need not be fought directly in combat
until all their points are resolved, since reducing all the points on a card does
not have to signify the death of the threat just the resolution of it in the
narrative for that game session how the scene is resolved is up to the you as
Negotiator for that round.
Once every player has had a turn or opportunity to use their Drama
Points on a Casting turn, you have the right to end that Casting turn as the
Negotiator. Once a Casting scene is finished, play continues to the left of the
Negotiator and the Negotiator passes the Negotiator token to right. All cards
not resolved are left face-up on the table for everyone to see with the resolved
ones discarded in their own area to signify their resolution.

Ending a Game Session

As plot cards begin to dwindle and when only a one or two remain on
the table, it should be a signal to everyone that the game is almost done and
that the remaining cards are going to be the last big bangs of the game session
the actual murderer is finally revealed; everything you thought you knew
is turned on its head; you have the final big showdown with the big bad that
you have been looking for or that has been stalking you all game; et cetera.
A game session finishes once all the cards have been reduced to zero points
and have been discarded. Take a minute to talk about the story and to maybe
do a bit of a mini epilogue. Discuss how things are resolved, what the cast
of characters do as things are wrapped up and talk about what elements in
the plot you liked, what was weird, the twists it took and what elements you
really enjoyed that you would like to see in future sessions.

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On Drama Turns

When you take on the role of a character or your protagonist during


someone elses Drama Turn you should be asking yourself two questions

How can I get Drama Points for my protagonist out of this scene?

How can I help other players earn Drama Points as well?


In order to do that you need to know how the drama is affecting your

protagonist if they are in the scene. Since you get Drama Points largely on
how your scenes are affecting your protagonist, how they feel and how they
change, you need to keep in mind how your character might get some Drama
Points out of the situation as well, without stealing the spotlight away from
the player whose turn it is.
If youre playing the conflict character of the protagonist in that scene you
want to roll with what that player is narrating and to help them get Drama
Points. Help build the relationship between the two characters, what their
problems are, create conflict, build it up and do not be afraid to tear their
protagonist down since that is what earns the player Drama Points.

On Casting Turns

When the Negotiator draws a plot card and frames a scene that introduces
a plot element you should be looking for ways to get through any obstacles
that the Negotiator creates by spending any Drama Points you have.
Do not feel like you should be hoarding or biding your time with your
points otherwise the story will end up slowing down to a crawl. Anytime there
is conflict or an obstacle in your way ask yourself how you can get through
it using magic and casting spells. Remember that a protagonist casting any
spell during a Negotiators turn goes towards reducing the (remaining) value
on the card you do not have to cast spells that directly wound, damage
or affect the plot element because you may very well not even know what
element is on the plot card yet. Healing other characters, finding out what
is going on, doing research, flying up to higher ground to get better vantage
points, literally any spell you cast and any point you spend will go towards
resolving the plot card and advancing the story so all you need to do is look
for situations and obstacles to spend your Drama Points on.

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Being a Magician
T

he biggest and best part about being a Magician is using magic. Not
only is using magic a fun and useful tool for conflict resolution, but it
is also the basis for the entire language learning element of the game.
Magic is all about languageit forms the shell, and it is the vessel in

which you contain and deliver your will unto the world. Most magicians, and
all beginner ones, must use a foreign language when casting a spell because
it forces precise thought and focuses a certain kind of perception that is only
present when using a language not immediately familiar.
Magic is not something everyone can do, even your protagonist did not
know that they could use magic until they were recently tested, vetted and
accepted into a school for magic. So what is it that allows only a select few
to cast magic and why your protagonist? It turns out that in order to cast
magic you have to be unhappy, unhappy to the point of your dissatisfaction
and dissonance with the world being so great that your will to see the world
change begins to manifest as magic. There are a number of unknown factors
as wellit could have something to do with abuse or proximity to a magical
fault line, the date of your birth or family lineage, it is hard to say for sure.
Casting spells and working with magic is painful, you can feel where
it comes from and the wound you have makes you different from everyone
else. It is also cathartic, you see your will made reality and you are made that
much more whole when you use your magic to channel that pain out of you.

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MAGIC AND CONFLICT RESOLUTION


The whole point of Magicians is to learn and speak Korean and since
the only time you are doing that as a player is when you are casting
magic, the entire resolution mechanic is built around using magic as
the one and only means of resolving conflict.
It may not always be appropriate or in line with the fiction to resolve
conflict via the use of magicmaybe you do not have any Drama
Points to do so in the first place. View conflicts as opportunities for
your protagonistyou have two choices as a player: you can either
resolve the conflict with magic, by spending Drama Points, so that
your protagonist may come out on top or you can break the conflict in
the other characters favor. While your character will lose, it is always
an opportunity to get Drama Points for use in future conflicts.
Since all conflicts that do not use magic are only narrated by
the characters involved, the manner in which your protagonist or
a character is unsuccessful is up to you and the players. It is an
opportunity to earn Drama Points but the character can come out
of the conflict in whatever fashion you choose when you Negotiate.

What Magic Can


and Cant Do

There are some things that magic cannot doa magician cannot directly
control another living thing without knowing a True Name and using it in the
spell; any spell cast without knowing the targets True Name or pronouncing
it wrong will automatically fail.
Magic cannot kill, transform or control without having this vital piece
of information; though magic can be used to harm a person indirectly, a
magician could not stop someones heart or turn their brain to mulch. This
is why a magicians True Name is rarely given and is usually only known by
the magicians mentor (who gave them their True Name.)

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Any object or being that is transformed by magic reverts back to its


original form once the effects of a spell wears off. Spells are normally never
permanent but can still there is still great risk in casting spells that transform a
living being. If a magicians were to transform their own self, for example, the
magician would actually become what they are turning intotransforming
into an eagle would mean becoming an eagle and so, after having done so,
the magician would be unable to cast magic and would slowly begin to forget
who and what they once were until the spell wore off.
Once a spell wears off it does not mean that the effects of a spell does.
Burn down your dorm room and it stays burnt down, summon a horse to
carry you and when it vanishes the hoof prints do not.
Aside from the limitations of the magician (being able to speak the target
language) magic can do pretty much anything. A really powerful spell can
hurt someone enough to kill them even without knowing their True Name,
turn you invisible for days, make illusions indistinguishable from reality and
all manner of other things. Magic that operates on an even bigger scale so
as to affect a town or city requires many magicians working in unison and
pooling their respective abilities, but is entirely possible.

TRUE NAMES
Knowing a True Name not only gives you power over the person or
creature but gives you the ability to affect, control or harm their mind
and body. Not only that, but mechanically you can do much more
harm; any Drama Points spent in directly harming a personmaking
their heart stop, damaging their internal organs, etc., inflicts two
wounds instead of the usual one.
Spells that control or otherwise influence a person become possible
but still require a great deal of energy and magic. The rules for
spending Drama Points, found in Chapter 6, apply and are made
possible by knowing the persons True Name.

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Emotions and Magical Power

You protagonists emotions are what fuel their magic and what gives

them the ability to cast magic in the first place. Their wound is the reason
why they can do magic and their current emotional state is what allows them
to continue using it. Since a protagonists negative emotions are what fuel
their magic, only the negative ones are relevant to them casting magic and
are divided into categories and put on the character sheet both as a visual
reminder of how many Drama Points you have currently but also how your
character is feeling and what kinds of scenes you can frame in order to affect
those categories and earn yourself some Drama Points.
The categories of emotions that can be affected negatively in some way
so as to earn you Drama Points are: Self-Worth, Love, Freedom, Justice,
Safety and Trust.

Gaining Drama Points

Whenever dramatic scenes are enacted that affect one of the categories

in some way, you get Drama Points which you then put into one or several
of the categories affected in that scene.
Players should be framing scenes in which their protagonist and the other
cast of characters build up drama in their lives in order to gain Drama Points
as often as possible, while the Negotiator, on casting turns (as explained in
Chapter 4), is encouraged to constantly be setting up scenes in which players
cast magic and expend their Drama Points. It is possible to both use Drama
Points when casting magic and to gain Drama Points by taking emotional
wounds at the same time.
If you are unsure of how to affect one of the categories negatively, put
your protagonist or other character into situation where they are:

Self-Worth: ashamed, beaten down, criticized, disrespected,


embarrassed/humiliated, made to be felt inferior, insulted or invalidated.
Mocked, offended, put down, resented, ridiculed or stereotyped, teased,
underestimated, made to feel worthless, ennui.

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Love: abandoned, alone, brushed-off or ignored, confused, heartbroken,


neglected, rejected, apathetic, unheard, unknown, unloved, unsupported,
unwanted, depressed or in despair.

Freedom: bossed around, controlled, imposed upon, imprisoned,


inhibited, manipulated, obligated, over-ruled, powerless, pressured,
trapped.

Justice: accused, blamed, cheated, disbelieved, falsely-accused, guilttripped, interrogated, judged, lied about, lied to, misled, punished or
robbed.

Safety: abused, afraid, attacked, defensive, frightened, insecure,


intimidated, over-protected, scared, terrified, threatened, under-protected,
unsafe or violated.

Trust: cynical, guarded, skeptical, suspicious, untrusted, or betrayed.


Whenever you earn Drama Points, you put them in one or more of the

five categories. Here are the guidelines for determining how many Drama
Points you earn.

You earn one Drama Point for scenes that leave your protagonist with
only slight emotional fallout such that it is quickly forgotten within a
few hours of the incident. Having your books knocked down to the floor
in passing by somebody would count for one Drama Point if it upsets
your protagonist.

You earn two Drama Points for scenes that leave your protagonist with
emotional scarring that is memorable and will stick with them for at least
a few days. Being humiliated by a teacher in class in front of everybody
would probably earn you at least two Drama Points depending on your
protagonist.

You earn three Drama Points for scenes that leave your protagonist
with emotional scarring that lasts at least a week or two. Confessing your
love only to be crushed (depending on your protagonists personality
and resilience) might earn you three Drama Points.

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You earn four Drama Points for scenes that leave your protagonist with
emotion scarring and memories that other people, and especially your
protagonist, will not forget for at least a semester. Public humiliation or
accident, a failed spell in class gone wrong, a mistake that earns you a
nickname for the rest of the school year would all earn you four Drama Points.

You earn five Drama Points for scenes when the consequences of a scene
affect your protagonist in such a profound way that it changes them and
how they are described on your character sheet. Hurting or accidentally
killing someone, doing something that earns you a nickname or reputation
that haunts you for years to come; the death of a loved one, being betrayed
by a confidant or your mentor so that you find it hard to trust someone
ever again are all examples of thing that would earn you five Drama Points.

Characters and relationships must first be introduced and built up before


a player can cash-in on more than one drama point. If another character
appears in a scene with your protagonist for the first time, you can only get
one drama point. You have to build up that relationship first before you can
cash in on it. Take notes on the back of your character sheet or on a fresh
sheet of paper and put a hatch mark next to a character each time your
protagonist interacts with them. If you do this it can be of great use when
you are unsure of a scene to frame for a Drama Turn - look over your list
of characters you have a vested interest in, choose one and start framing.

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Gaining Too Many Drama Points

Whenever a magician earns Drama Points they are put into the appropriate

category. When any one category reaches five Drama Points, the maximum,
they must either cast a spell in the next scene they appear in or they have to
play out a Breakdown.
A scene in which a protagonist breaks down is one in which they fly
off the handle and do something stupid, hurtful or otherwise malicious to
another character. By playing out a Breakdown, the player transfers their
Drama Points, one or more, to the target of the breakdown in the scene. A
player can willingly play out a breakdown scene at any point. The target does
not have to be a player character.

Spending Drama Points

You use Drama Points to power your spells; they are the fuel you burn

that makes casting magic possible. You spend Drama Points to cast spells,
advance the story and to resolve conflicts. When you spend Drama Points on
magic, there are two types of spells you can cast. Contested spells are spells
that are actively being blocked or where the target is someone capable of
magic and is resisting the spell you are casting. Uncontested spells are spells
you cast where the target is offering no resistance and the only thing stopping
the spell from working is your own ability to cast successfully.
Contested spells have the potential to be negated or defended against
despite you casting the spell perfectly. There is a will on the other end that
is trying to stop the spell from happening. Spells cast against someone who
cannot counter your magic are not contested spells since the target cannot
block the spell via magicall they can do is try to stop you from casting
or finishing a spell or try to minimize any damage. Even spells cast against
other magicians may go uncontested if the target magician is too busy, if
they choose not to defend themselves or if they have no wards or protection.
Uncontested spells are spells that need only be cast correctly in order
to work and are always cast on inanimate things or people that are either
willing to have a spell cast on them or who cannot use magic. Spells to open
locks, make a friend strong, fly or change the weather, etc. are all examples
of uncontested spellsas long as your target is willing to have spells cast on

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them. Just because a spell is uncontested does not make it easy though, as you
will find in the next chapter dealing with spell casting and spell complexity.
There is an inherent difficulty in the casting of any spell represented by
the number of Drama Points you need to spend in order to cast them. If a
plot card is drawn that says lock and has two points written on the card,
then two Drama Points must be spent in the scene the Negotiator framed
using that cardwhether it be a spell where you spent two Drama Points
to unlock the door or one point to see if anything is on the other side and
another to make yourself strong enough to break the lock. If a character, threat,
or monster has three points written on their card then three points need to
be spent on it in order for the threat to be resolved and the card discarded.
Not all spells have to deal wounds and damagedo not think of the
points written on a card as how many wounds are needed to kill a monster
or take out a threat; even spells cast to figure out information about the
element on the card like looking for weaknesses, trapping it or hindering it,
all contribute to reducing the value on the card. Players are only limited by
their creativity and imagination when thinking of the number of ways to
resolve conflicts or cast spells to advance the story.

Attempting Magic

To cast spells and work magic in Magicians you will need to speak Korean.
Depending on what difficulty level you use to cast magic, you will need to
either choose a noun and verb to suite your intent and what you want the spell
to do or you will need to use a complete sentence, using target vocabulary
and a grammar pattern that coincides with the type of magic you are casting.
Once you have chosen and written down the words you will need to speak
to cast your spell, you will speak it aloud into your phone while running a
dictation app capable of understanding the Korean language. If the dictation
app recognizes what you said and dictates in Korean what you have written
down then you will have successfully cast the spell and will achieve your
intent. If your pronunciation was incorrect and the dictation program does
not understand what you said you will not achieve your intent. Instead, there
will be a twist in the story as the Negotiator introduces something into the
narrative to complicate your protagonists goal, objective or life in general.

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Failure is always a negotiation between you and the Negotiator, you will
decide together on how the story will progress whether a spell fails or not. All
Drama Points spent by a player go to reducing the value on a card whether
the spell fails or not and all Drama Points spent by a player are consumed
in either event.

The Negotiation

Whenever it is your turn to do something during a Casting Turn and there


is obstacle or you want to advance the story in any way, you do so by coming
up with a spell. All spells attemped during the game count towards reducing
the number of points on a card if the card was used as an element in that
scene. Spells should knock down obstacles, creatively side-step complications
and be used to gather information about the world and the dangers in it.
All spells cast should have a purpose, called your intent. What your
protagonist or you, as a player, want to have or expect to have happen if
the spell succeeds. Likewise, if the spell fails and you do not achieve your
intent there needs to be a consequence for failure different from what your
protagonist wanted or expected to have happen.
As soon as you know what your intent is and what spell you want to
cast, tell it to the table and the Negotiator. It is the Negotiators job to tell
you what is going to happen if you make a mistake or do not cast your spell
properly. Both your intent and the consequence for failure is not a statement
set in stoneit is a proposal, a negotiation that is worked out by you and
the Negotiator and possibly with the input of the rest of the players. Success
should be reasonable and within the realm of possibility as laid out by the
rules of the game and the players at the table.
Failure never brings the story to a standstillit should never be as
simple as your spell doesnt work, now what do you do? Instead, failure is
there to complicate the lives of the protagonists and to introduce unexpected
elements into the story. Both success and failure is always agreed upon by
both the player casting the spell and the Negotiator before play resumes, the
player casts the spell and the results are observed.

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Failure

Failure is an important part of Magicians because it is going to happen

a lot, especially when you first start playing the game. Whenever you first
start learning a language and start getting used to pronunciation and a
new alphabet there is going to be a period of time where you will be doing
nothing but failing. Since a big chunk of time is going to be spent failing, it is
important that failure never stops the story and that it makes it all that more
interesting by introducing more conflict or adding in interesting complications.
Ensure an interesting story by negotiating exciting stakes for both success
and failure. There are also some optional rules for failure in Chapter 11 for
those particularly interested in failing.

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Failure Outside of Combat

Whenever you are about to cast a spell you need to first state your

intentwhat you hope to accomplish by casting the spell in that scene. If


the Negotiator agrees that you will receive your intent should you cast the
spell properly, then the Negotiator will propose what happens in the event
of a failure. This consequence for failure is agreed on by both you and the
Negotiator. Both the success and failure of a spell casting should progress
the story in a fun and interesting way. The Negotiator will state clearly how
many Drama Points are needed in order for the player to achieve their intent
and cast the spell along with the consequence for failure.
If you fail to achieve your intent and the dictation app does not write
down what you wrote down and wanted to say correctly, it could mean
that the spell itself succeeds but another complication arises, it could mean
the spell gets away from you, has an unintended consequence or takes on a
life of its ownmaybe it is weakened, negated or perverted or maybe the
consequence for failure has nothing to do with the spell. A teacher might
catch you casting a spell you should not be casting or should not know, or
catch you in a place you should not be.
Negotiators determine consequence by looking at what is at stake in the
scene, what the protagonist casting the spell wants and by coming up with a
way to make getting that more difficult in a way that makes the game even
more fun and interesting because the protagonist has to push through more
adversity to achieve his intent later on in the story.
EXA M P L E
Perry wants to cast a spell to unlock a door in the library to get into
the next room. The Negotiator states that the lock is fairly simple, and
so only requires one drama point spent to be opened. The Negotiator
proposes that if the spell fails, another student will spot him trying to
get into the room and raise the alarm. Perry agrees and takes out his
smartphone to start casting.

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Failure In Combat

Combat is choice made by the Negotiator before they begin framing their

Casting Turn. Combat is when the Negotiator decidees to throw the threat
on their card at the cast of characters. Negotiators should check how many
points are on the card, decide whether to frame a scene in which the threat
is not a direct threat to the players (not in combat) or a scene which ends up
with the cast of characters confronting the threat in combat.
Whenever you are casting spells in combat, the consequence for failure
may also be similarly laid out by you and the Negotiator but the Negotiator
does not need to tell you how many points are needed take down a threat
or resolve a card. A Negotiator might tell you the air around the creature
shimmers as it turns toward you or other such details but it is up to you
and the other players to run with the descriptions information as given and
decide how big you want to go on your spells.
In order to keep things moving quick in combat, you first will state your
intent when casting the spell in case you want the spell to do something not
obvious to the rest of the table and Negotiator and then you narrate you
casting the spell. The Negotiator will finish off the scene and tell you how
the scene plays out by saying Yes and or Yes but
EXA M P L E
Grace: As the creature lumbers forward toward me I pick up a nearby
pebble, charge it with magical energy and throw it at the creature! [Grace
casts the spell by speaking into her smartphone]
[Successful casting] Negotiator: Yes and you see the creature stumble
backward in confusion. The shimmer in the air around the creature is no
longer apparent.
[Unsuccessful casting] Negotiator: Yes but the creature spots the
glowing pebble coming and swats it out of the air with its massive claw,
while howling in rage.

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Special Situations and


Casting Spells

When casting spells there is a set of guidelines you need to follow. Spells
cannot exceed five points. When determining how many Drama Points you
need to spend on spell start with one drama point and then follow these
guidelines:

Add a point to affect the scale of a spell. Making a person a few feet
taller for a scene only requires one point, making someone as tall as a
house for a scene requires an addition point. Lighting a book on fire
only requires one point, lighting an entire bookcase on fire requires an
additional point.

Add a point for extreme situations i.e. being chased and wanting to
cast quickly, hallucinating or sensory deprivation.

Add a point to deal another wound, one point per wound. One Drama
Point inflicts one wound.

Add a point to increase the quality of a spell like an illusion or


transformation. When casting an illusion, one point will only affect
or simulate one sense and an additional point for every two senses is
required i.e. if the illusion is visible it will not be tangible, have an odor
or taste like anything, etc.

Add a point for each additional property you add or remove from an
object. If you want to make a fire not give off any light you only need
to spend one point, if you want it to not give off any light and to give
off a particular smell or sound instead of heat then you need to spend
an additional point.

Add a point to increase the duration of a spell. If you want to maintain


an illusion for a scene one point is enough, if you want to sustain the
spell for the whole day at least one additional drama point would have to
be spent, more if the spell was deemed particularly intricate or complex
by the Negotiator and tableparticularly spells that wound in combat.

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Sustaining a wall of flame costs the number wounds it does to a target


per turn in combat, whereas sustaining an illusion for the better part of
a day would only require one extra drama point.

NOTE: Negating a spell always requires spending the same number


of Drama Points that was required to cast the spell. The counter spell must
also be pronounced clearly and properly just like casting a normal spell.
These rules depend largely on the table and the negotiation between you

and the Negotiator. All drama point expenditures come down to the deal
struck between the magician casting the spell and the Negotiator.

GETTING TRICKY
It may happen that a player tries to squeeze out more effects or
wounds from a spell than it normally would do. For example, a
player with only one drama point to spend may use it to knock over
a statue on a target in the hopes of dealing more wounds. In these
situations it all comes down to the negotiation between the player
and the Negotiator. Encouraging the use of creative spells, especially
when a player does not have a lot of Drama Points to spend can be
fun but can also set a dangerous precedent. Negotiators need to set
hard consequences of such spells and should make the consequence
for failure a risky proposition. If the player is trying to squeeze more
wounds or extra conditions out of a spell make sure that if they mess
the casting up something equally perilous befalls them. Since the
players want more out of them, these spells should always be more
risky than normal.

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Types of Magic

Knowing the different types of magic not only helps you categorize the
types of magic for easier reference but can also serve as a spark for inspiration
and to give you an idea of what magic can be used to do. More than that, when
delving into the casting mechanics behind the master casting system found
in Chapter 6, you will learn that different types of magic require knowing
certain and specific grammar and vocabulary.

Augmentation

Magic used to enhance or to give a magicians

magic different, unique qualities fall into the


augmentation category of magic. Augmentation
magic is how you cast magic with particular
properties or qualities that may be necessary in
certain situations. It is descriptive in its use and
is used to attain the particular or specific effect of
magic you require when casting. As such, it is the
most common type of magic used. To give your
magic properties like burning, freezing, hard, sticky,
acidic, etc. you use augmentation magic.

WHY THE NEED TO BE DESCRIPTIVE?


Not only does being descriptive in your use of magic make for a more
fun, engaging game but it also makes your spell unique, more difficult
to negate (see the section for negation magic) and is used to bypass
certain obstacles or resistances a target or creature might have. If
you are fighting a troll particularly weak against fire, you might want
to give your magic the hot or burning property, to punch a hole
through a wall you might give your magic an acidic property, etc.
Remember that the more descriptive you are, the more fun the
game is going to be. Assign your threats certain properties that
reward or force creativity!

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Clairvoyance

Magic used to divine information from tarot cards and fortune reading, or

spells designed to scour information from books, are part of clairvoyance. All
clairvoyance magic is designed to do one thing and one thing onlyretrieve
information. The medium with which magicians cast clairvoyance spells varies
from magician to magicianit could be looking into a pool of water, praying
to a God, exploring dreams or delving into the collective unconscious but at
the root of any clairvoyance spell is a question. The magician casts a spell by
asking a question and, depending on how hard that question is to answer,
the more difficulty the spell has in turning up results.
The difficulty, or the number of Drama Points that must be spent
retrieving the information a magician requires, depends on the scarcity of
that information. This determined by the Negotiator for that round with the
guidelines as follows.
If the information the magician is looking for is in the immediate vicinity
and is well known by many people, (considered common knowledge) only
one drama point is required to be spent. Add another drama point for how far
away that information is from the casteranother point for within the same
building, another if it is miles away, another if it is outside the state and another
if it is outside the country. In addition, add a drama point if the information
is only known to a select few individuals, another if it is only known to a small
group of experts, and another if is only known to an individual.

Clairvoyance Drama Point Costs


POINT COST
1

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VICINITY AND SCARCITY

in the immediate vicinity, common knowledge

+1

...within the same building

+2

...miles away

+3

...outside the state

+3

...outside the country

+1

...only known to a select few individuals

+2

...only known to a small group of experts

+3

...only known to an individual

BEING A MAGICIAN

TRUE NAMES?
Inevitably, at some point, the clairvoyance magic leads to the question
of if it can be used to find out someones True Name. While that is
up to your group and the Negotiator, I always say yes because it
makes for a more dramatic and fun game,
Just remember, if you can use it to find their True Name, it should be
assumed they can find yours.

Conditioning

Magic that makes a living thing, or even an object, better in some way

is what the conditioning type of magic is all about but it can also be used in
reverse; magic used to enhance and make a person stronger or faster, make
an object more durable can also be used to make a person weaker, slower or
an object more fragile.
Essentially what this type of magic does is apply certain conditions to a
person or object for a certain amount of time. To apply one condition to an
object or person for a single scene you must spend one drama point. Each
additional condition requires an extra drama point and, beyond that, Drama
Points can be used to increase the duration of a spell.
Conditional magic is often used to assign protective conditions to a
character. Giving a character a resistance to fire or stone skin for a round of
combat will protect them at a 1:1 ratio of Drama Points spent to wounds
sustained.
Any one condition can only affect a character in one way. Giving a
character the condition fast cannot be applied to both making the character
faster by going first in combat and also to being protective by maybe allowing
them to dodge out of the way of spells, you would have to choose what effect
the condition has on the character at the time of casting.
In order to affect a person and their body in any direct waymaking it
so they can lift something heavy or making it so they become tired or hungry
always requires knowing the targets True Name. You can help or hinder
indirectly without knowing a True Namemaking the object they want to

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lift lighter, making a room warm with dim lighting or simulating the smell
of something delicious with an illusion, but without the targets True Name
you are limited to indirect influence.
Conditional magic assigns conditions to the target it is cast on, whether
it is negative or positive and it is good practice to always note on the character
sheet or conflict character card of the character affectedwhat the condition
is, the effect it has and how long it lasts.

AUGMENTATION VS. CONDITIONING


Conditions are used on people or objects are generally used to make
someone faster or to provide padding or armor to resist wounds in
combat or to get through obstacles outside of combat e.g. you might
cast a spell to give yourself resistance to fire before launching into
combat with a dragon.
Augmentation is used on magic only usually to bypass defenses or
properties on an object or person e.g. if a troll can only be damaged
with fire, you use augmentation magic to hurt it and bypass that
property.

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TYPES OF CONDITIONS
Conditions are further explored later on but knowing what effect a
condition has on a character is especially important in combat.
Outside of combat a condition is cast simply to get past or to an
obstacle but, in combat, conditions are useful for one of two things
affecting damage or affecting who goes first.

Dispelling

Magic used to negate or otherwise remove magic or a spell through the

use of magic itself falls into the Dispelling category of magic. A magician
might need to remove the effects of an ongoing spell or to cast a counter
spell to make a spell dissipate harmlessly before having the intended effect.
The number of Drama Points that must be used to remove or negate a
spell is always equal to the number of Drama Points spent to cast the spell.
Removing a spell never repairs what the spell has already done but simply
negates the spell so that it is no longer active, nor has any continuing effect.

Healing

Magic used to repair any damage,

treat wounds and diseases, generally


improve the health of a living thing
or to repair something that is not
alive all falls under the category of
Healing magic. Repairing and healing
something, especially a person or
living creature, requires incredibly
complex spells that are actually spells
that trigger other, supernatural effects.
Essentially, it is a spell that sets off or
triggers another spell that forms the
complex lattices and spell patterns
needed to heal or put back together
the target of the spell. Most of these

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healing spells have been passed down through generations and are incredibly
old prayers from various religions to a diverse range of Gods. Since there are
no common elements to these spells, just that they require what we know
as prayer and the ability to cast magic, no one can be certain of the source
of power behind the triggered effect. Moreover, Healing magic and prayer
spells have never required faith in order to be cast. They are simple spells
that are amplified by another source that work every time by any Magician
belonging to any, or no, faith. As such, the use of healing magic, while widely
practiced, is a sensitive topic for most magicians and an area of much study.
Healing magic requires the same number of Drama Points spent as the
number of wounds need to be healed, or the number of points were used to
cause the conditions or properties trying to be removed.

Illusion

Magic that simulates or tricks one or more of the five senses into believing

that a certain thing or sensation is real, when it is not, is Illusion magic. It can
do anything from simulating a noise like the barking of a dog or the sound
of a teachers voice to creating an object out of nothing and making it so that
people not only perceive it, but can touch it, taste it, smell it and perhaps even
hear something emanating from it.
When casting Illusion magic, one drama point is spent to simulate a single
sensesight, touch, sound, taste or smell. In order to simulate an additional
two senses you must spend another drama point. Creating an illusion that
simulates all five senses costs 3 Drama Points after which a magician might
spend additional points to increase the duration of the spell.

POINT COST
1

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EFFECT
One sense simulated

+1

Three senses simulated

+2

All five sesnses simulated

BEING A MAGICIAN

Striking

Magic that requires the use of focus and a high level of precision falls

into the Striking magic category. Magicians often use it in conjunction with
Augmentation magic in order to give a spell a particular quality as well as
to focus it and to ensure it strikes not only the intended target but the exact
place the magician intends e.g. flinging a fire ball into the eye of a Cyclops or
making wind razor-sharp and using it to cut the Achilles tendon of an attacker.
The number of Drama Points that must be spent on striking magic
depends on how precise a target the Magician is trying to hit or affect. For a
part of the body like a limb, the chest, or legs, only one point is required. An
additional point is required for the head or similarly sized area and another
point for some partially obscured or particularly difficult to hit target like
the fingers. In addition, a point must be added for distance if the target is in
another room, another point if the target is a significant distance away like
across a field and another if the target is barely visible.

POINT COST

107

TARGET SIZE

DISTANCE

Limb/Chest/Legs

Same room

+1

Head or smaller

A different room

+2

Obscured target

Barely Visible if on a flat plane

BEING A MAGICIAN

Summoning

Magic that calls a target, usually a magical creature or person, to the

magician is called Summoning magic. Summoning any living thing that has
a True Name requires first knowing it in order to compel the target to come
when called but a Summoning spell can still be cast with a persons regular
name or nickname as long as the magician knows the person or could point
them out in a crowd. As many people may have the same namethe more
the magician knows about who or what they are calling, the stronger the
Summoning is.
If a spell is cast without the True Name of the target, or the target does
not have a True Name, it is not compelled to answer the summons, whereas
calling with a True Name forces the target to come when called as soon as
possible for the target. The magician can specify that the target is under an
amount of simulated pain that only grows less as the distance between the
magician and target closes if cast with a True Name; the spell does not actually
do real, physical harm or wounds but feels that way to the target until the
distance is closed. The spell does not provide a means of travel for the target
but the target does know the location they are being summoned to.

Telekinetic

Magic that uses the will of the magician casting the spell to create and

exert a kinetic force that can be used to move or manipulate an object without
having to directly exert the force is Telekinetic magic.
Telekinetic magic is often used for simple tasks and so only require one
drama point to be spent. However, in cases where the magician is using an
object to inflict harm or exerting an excessive amount of force on the object
for whatever reason, additional Drama Points are required. How far an
object can be thrown can be extrapolated from how much damage it would
do to a target. Wounds and damage can be found in the following section in
Conflicts and Fighting.

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Temporal

Magic that affects time in any way falls into the category of Temporal

magic. Stopping time, slowing it, speeding it up, controlling it so that it affects
certain people or areas of space differently are all possible with temporal magic.
Temporal magic is very dangerous and difficult to cast, as such it costs
one drama point per person or object being affected by the temporal effect
per round of combat (or 5 minutes outside of combat). It costs an additional
point for every additional round of combat, or five minutes outside of combat,
for the spell to continue.

5 MINUTES = 1 ROUND OF COMBAT?


One round of combat does not last five minutes in a game. One round
of combat lasts however long you need it to in order for the threat
and all other participants to take one turn.

Warding

Magic that is defensive in nature and used by magicians to cast spells to

protect themselves from future harm fall into the category of wards. There are
three different tiers of defensive wards and wards are unique in that they are
scriptures read aloud by a magician with focus in order to gain the benefits
of these defensive spells and require no drama point expenditure. Characters
can only have one ward on them at any time.
The first tier Ward gives the magician the ability to counter a spell even
if not actively defendingit creates a temporal bubble around the magician
so that any spell that hits it slows down enough to give the magician a chance
to negate the spell before it hits them; whether successful or not, the ward is
consumed and disappears after being struck by a spell.
The second tier Ward, in addition to allowing the magician the chance
to negate the spell, also reduces the damage a spell does by one wound in
case the spell is not negated and is damaging. The ward is consumed and
disappears after one use.

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The third tier Ward not only reduces any damage received by two but
it also creates a superior temporal bubble around the magician that also
plays back a short period of the past in which the spell was cast. This is
represented in the game by forcing the magician who cast the spell to repeat
the words they spoke to cast the spell so that the magician has a better chance
of negating the spell.

START-OF-SESSION PRACTICE
Wards are there to get you warmed up for speaking in another language
and to reward you for having good, clear pronunciation. Wards are
card by speaking a tongue twister properly and are a great way to
both start a game session and protect your protagonist from harm.

Conflicts and Fighting

Whenever there is a conflict between characters in a scene there is potential


for that conflict to lead either to a fight or to casting contested magic. During
Drama Turns where what you want to be doing is acquiring Drama Points
you will not usually escalate to this level. These activities are usually reserved
for Casting turns. However, there is no hard rule against it, so make sure to
do what makes sense for the players in the scene.

Magical Conflicts

Whenever you are about to enter a combat scene you have two options.
One, you can narrate through the conflict in such a way that your character

acquires Drama Points. This usually means that your character loses the
conflict and accrues Drama Points due to the fallout of that tough situation
of wanting to do something but choosing not to or being unable to do so. In
these cases, what happens in the scene is up to the player who has ownership
of that scenethe player who began narrating that scene in the first place.
Two, you can choose to spend Drama Points to have the character come
out on top by means of magic. Whenever you decide to spend Drama Points

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you need to set stakes with the Negotiator as to the terms of you casting the
spellwhat will happen if you succeed and what will happen if you fail.
In cases where one character or protagonist wants to fight another
character or protagonist, then the following combat rules are used. They are
the same as combat against threats, but there are no values to reduce as on
threat cards - just wounds and stakes .
Whenever beginning a conflict:

Determine who is a part of the conflict. While this might seem obvious
at first, the Negotiator must also come to a decision as to whether their
own protagonist or the conflict character they play the role of is taking
part in the conflict and in what capacity.

If you are playing the Negotiator during a combat round you are
responsible for acting for and as the threat during the combat. Beyond
that, you may decide to include your protagonist or conflict character
in the fight as well. It is up to you to ask another player to take on any
of their roles or to simply not have them take part in the conflict by
narrating what they are doing and where they are (whether it be in
the conflict or not) but without having the characters participate in a
meaningful way that would require casting spells. In short: Negotiators
should always try to include as many players' characters in a scene as
possible - the decision to play their own character in addition to their
Negotiator responsibilities is up to them.

Who Goes First

Who gets to act first in combat can be a great advantage but, during

most fights, everyone will be on equal footing and so everyone will go at the
same time. That said, to determine the order the characters go in determine
where the character lies in one of the three tiers:

Anyone who is moving faster or who has a positive condition that


affects their speed goes first; if multiple characters are moving faster
than normal they act at the same time, the character with the highest
number of positive conditions goes first. If multiple characters have
multiple positive conditions, with characters who have the same number
acting at the same time.

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Anyone who is moving at normal speed (who does not have any negative
conditions) goes nextif multiple characters are moving at normal
speed they act at the same time.

Anyone who has a negative condition goes last; if multiple characters


are moving slower than normal speed they go at the same time with
characters that have multiple negative conditions going last.
All characters must write down their spell on a piece of paper before the

combat round begins. By writing it down beforehand youve established your


action and cannot change itthis makes it feel like everything is happening all
at once; in addition, your spell might also need to be negated so by writing it
down you both have something to read off of when you cast the spell and will
also have something to verify if a caster negates your spell. When everyone has
finished writing and the Negotiator announces the start of any given round,
the players take turns announcing the action of their character starting from
who goes first to who goes last. Once everyone has taken an action that round
of combat is finished and both that scene, and the fight (unless using optional
rules to prolong fights in order to resolve a threat card fastersee Chapter
11: Optional Rules), is concluded. The Negotiator concludes the scene with
a few words to summarize everything that happened in that round.
The advantage to going first is that you may be able to act and take out a
threat before they wound you or your friends, get away, or impose conditions.
These spells take effect before the slower character has a chance to act.

Conditions

In addition to acquiring conditions by casting spells, characters can also

have conditions imposed upon them via non-magical methodsnamely


getting hurt. Whenever your character sustains a certain number of wounds
they gain a negative condition which slows them down in a fight. There are
two kinds of conditionspositive ones that help a character in some way,
or negative ones that hinder them.
Whenever conditions are imposed on a character, they are named and
written down on the character sheet or card of whatever is being affected. The
name of the condition is up to the caster but its affect is always written either
with a plus or minus sign first (to show a positive or negative condition) and

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then, beside it, its effect and how long the condition lasts (if the condition is
active or cast during a fight.)
A spell that makes a characters skin as hard as stone might be written
as: + Stone Skin reduces wounds taken by one point for one round.
A spell that slows a character down and makes them clumsy might be
written as: - Slowed acts last in combat and lasts for one round.

Positive Conditions
A positive condition can be anything that improves or makes a character
better in some way. A spell might be cast to make them think better, run faster,
jump higher, or make them appear more handsome. Positive conditions are
usually assigned via Conditional magic for a short period of time in order
to get past barriers and get through obstacles but they can also be helpful in
combat; spells that make your skin as dense as stone or ones that slow down
time for everyone but you can provide significant advantages.
Positive conditions are particularly useful in combat for either reducing
wounds taken or for allowing a character to act before everyone else. In
addition, all negative conditions can be removed, at least temporarily, by
countering them with positive conditions. The negative condition wounded
can only be temporarily suppressed as long as the positive condition stays
in effect as it is not healing the target, just allowing them to act normal
temporarily.

Negative Conditions

A negative condition is anything that hampers or prevents a character

from acting at normal capacity. It might make them slower, dumber, clumsy
or make them appear ugly. Like positive conditions, they are usually assigned
to a character by way of spell casting but one negative condition in particular,
traumatized is assigned to a character after they sustain three wounds or
more. All other negative conditions wear off or can be countered with a
positive condition, traumatized can only be removed permanently (at least,
until that character is wounded again) by being healed so that the character
has less than two wounds total.

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Wounds and Recovery

All characters have the capacity to take five wounds without dying as

it is the sixth wound that ends a characters life. One drama point is equal
to one wound and a maximum number of five Drama Points can be used
on a single spell. Therefore a powerful spell has the potential to almost kill
a character in one successful cast if all the Drama Points are put into doing
pure damaging, wounding force.
Wounds do not always have to represent purely physical trauma, it
could represent psychic as well but always only refers to the type of trauma
that requires care and treatment if heavily wounded. Regardless, any kind
of trauma that is inflicted on a character takes the same amount of time to
heal whether it is physical or mental.
When a character is wounded there are two ways for them to recover.
The first is via the use of magic that heals the character and is instantaneous,
perhaps requiring only a few minutes to repair severe damage and to have
the character conscious and well. The second way to recover is by traditional
methodsfirst aid, fluids and rest. This method takes far more time however
as it takes a character reducing the number of wounds they have from five
to four about three months. From four to three hit points takes two months,
three to two takes one month, two to one takes 2 weeks and one to zero takes
a couple days.

One wound represents superficial wounds that, when left to their own
devices, will heal given some time.

Two wounds represent a sprain, or a deeper wound that is more serious


and requires attention.

Three wounds represent a wound like a dislocated shoulder or internal


bleeding and bruising.

Four wounds represent something broken that takes a significant


amount of time to recover from.

Five wounds represent trauma that leaves a lasting mark on the body
chronic pain in an area or, at the very least, a good scar.

Six wounds represents the damage down to a character that is dead


and can no longer be treated or saved.

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Casting Magic
N

ow that you know what you can do and what is possible with magic,
you need to know how to do it. Magicians is designed specifically
for learning the Korean language. There are three systems of magic
in Magicians that are designed to take you from knowing little to

no Korean all the way up to being semi-conversant and being able to express
yourself. In addition to using the book as a reference and guide to the language,
you also need a smartphone or computer with a dictation app capable of
understanding the Korean language installed.

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The Three Systems

The three systems are designed to build up your vocabulary, teach you
the Korean alphabet and proper pronunciation and then to give you the
proper grammar and syntax you need to speak in full sentences, as follows:

The Prodigy Systemneeds no knowledge of Korean or the alphabet,


you only need to learn thirteen words, (seven nouns and six verbs), one
of each are put together depending on the spell you want to cast.

The Apprentice Systembuilds on your learning of the thirteen words


by having you use your new found familiarity with pronunciation to
learn the Korean writing system, called Hangeul (), and coming
up with your own spells based on your intent instead of relying on the
thirteen word system.

The Master Systembuilds on the vocabulary you built after learning


Hangeul and choosing nouns and verbs for spells according to the situation
and your intent by giving you grammar patterns and key vocabulary to
learn according to the type of spell you want to cast.

The Tech

Magicians requires a dictation application on your smartphone or


computer in order to determine success or failure. Instead of a random
element to determine success or failure, it is your ability as a player of the
game and speaker of Korean that determines if your character achieves their
intent and the stakes you set out for them.
There are many dictation apps out for the smartphoneeither on iOS,
Android or Blackberry or for the computer as well. A mobile option is the best
way to play Magicians because the apps are free and because your phone is
something that you probably always keep with you anyway. The applications
that have been playtested and work well are:

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iOSDragon Dictation. Free download from the app store.

Android, BlackberryGoogle Translate, Handcent. Free download


from the play store.

ComputerDragon Naturally Speaking. $100 from nuance.com. Often


times you can find it bundled with voice recorders.
When you cast a spell you need to:

Write down the words that will make up the spell, whether it be a single
noun and verb or a full sentence,

Launch your dictation app of choice.

Speak the words you wrote down previous into the phones microphone.

Watch as the dictation app computes and then writes down what it
heard you say.
If the words that the app produces match the words you wrote down to

cast your spell, your spell is a success and the Negotiator tells you what happens
as negotiated by you and the Negotiator when determining the stakes and
consequences for failure. If the words do not match what you wrote down then
you the Negotiator tells you what happens as per the consequences for failure.

Basics of Writing
and Pronunciation

The Korean alphabet is completely phonetic and is very easy to master


with some dedicated time and energy. At the Prodigy System learning the
entire alphabet is not required since you only need to learn the pronunciation
of the thirteen different words needed to cast any spell you can think of; you
may wish to skip ahead to the chapter on the Prodigy System so that you can
learn and memorize the pronunciation of those thirteen words. However, a
working understanding of the alphabet will serve you better in the beginning
and when you choose to expand into the other systems.

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Reading and Writing:

In order to cast spells you must first learn the language of magic, starting
with the alphabet. The Korean alphabet is called Hangeul (). Sounds
are represented by characters made up of a consonant and a vowel (),
one character represents a single syllable.

Consonants

g as in girl
c as in change! Lots of aspiration, air should be coming out of your
mouth

g in gone (but with heavy emphasis)


k as in kill! Lots of aspiration
n as in no
t as in talk! Lots of aspiration
d as in dog
p as in pow! Lots of aspiration
d as in dang it! (heavy emphasis)
b as in bark
j as in just
b as in bang! (heavy emphasis)
j as in Jamaica (but with heavy emphasis)
m as in mother
s as in Seoul(but not quite as strong as an English s), can also be an
sh sound sometimes

s as in Son of a gun! (Heavy emphasis on the s as if you were cursing,


the double ss is very strong

h as in hope (but as if you were blowing steam onto your glasses)


a rolled r as in Spanish
at the beginning of a syllable (before a vowel) it functions as a zero
place holder. is never pronounced at the beginning of a word, it just
sits there looking pretty. At the end of a syllable, however, it signifies
an ng sound as in singer.

For ease of reading, the double characters will be written as twin consonants ( as dd, as gg, etc.)
These are the consonants () of the Korean language.

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Vowels

a as in father
ya as in yard
aw as in thaw
yo as in yonder (yaw)
o as in poke (push your lips out!)
yo as in yoga (remember those lips)
oo as in boot (push you lips out!)
yoo as in yuletide (remember those lips)
ae (like the a in bat)
ya as in yap
eh (like the e in bet)
ye as in yep
eu (like the u in pull or put)
wa is the first vowel of wow
ee as in feet
wo as in wonder
we as in wet (same as , )
we as in wet
wi as in the French oui
we as in wet (same as )
uh-ee (u as in pull followed by ee as in feet together)
These are the vowels () of the Korean language.

Forming words

A consonant must always be written first, so if you wanted to write down

the word for milk in Korean, which is pronounced oo-yoo you have to use
the zero placeholder to signifier there is technically no consonant in front.
You would write (oo) (yoo). When written on their own, all the vowels
above would have the place holder to signify the absence of a consonant.
Words are made by placing a consonant (or an to signify a lack of
consonant), followed by a vowel. (ga) (naw), (bee) would all be
examples of this.

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It is also possible to add another consonant after a vowel. As in (gang


where the ng is like the ng in sing) (nawn), or (beet) would all be
examples.
Furthermore, while much rarer, it is possible to add another consonant
on the end (but thats it I promise). However, whenever this is done, the
final consonant is the only one pronounced. For example,

(eet),

(an), (jawl).
You may have noticed that some characters sound different if theyre in
the terminal position of the syllable. Some are the same and otherwise most
are pronounced similarly.
In the terminal position the consonants are pronounced:

Terminal Position Consonant Pronunciation

k as in kiss
t as in feet (short pronunciation)
exactly the same as
same as
no change, n as in no
t as in feet (short pronunciation)
d as in good (short pronunciation)
k as in kiss
same as
d as in good (short pronunciation)
t as in feet (short pronunciation)
p as in pot
same as
no change, m as in mother
p as in the last p pup (short pronunciation)
same as
only pronounced when in the terminal position, always ng sound as
in sing.

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Words made up of multiple syllables:

Some words are made of single syllables, (bool) fire, (mool)

water, (ddang) earth are examples of this but many words are multiple
syllables: (ba-ram) wind, or (ha-neul), (yaw-gi) here,
or

(na-ee) age and (ah-baw-ji) father, are examples of this.


All these words are easy to pronounce since the Korean language is

completely phonetic, however, there are some rules that must be learnt. For
examples, when writing:

should be pronounced (ba-da-yo) not (bad-a-yo)its a


small difference, but it marks a much greater fluency. Whenever there is a
syllable ending in a consonant and the next syllable is empty (has an )
you carry the sound of that syllable over so that it starts the next syllable as
in the example above.

(maw-gaw-yo), notice the g sound for because it is at the


beginning of the syllable now when you carry it over. To contrast,
(mawk-da) you will have the k sound come out for because it is in the
terminal position.
In the case of (il-gaw-yo) or (jawl-maw-yo) youll
notice that the last terminal character carries over, but the extra terminal
character is still pronounced.

/
You may be wondering why they all have the

/ attached to

them. This signifies the end of a sentence and is a way of conjugating the
verb. In Korean, the sentence always ends with the verb. Basically you talk
like Yoda all the time. Subject-object-verb, compared to subject-verb-object
in English. It takes some getting used to but youll pick it up with practice.
In Korean there are also various ways of ending a sentence/conjugating
a verb to signify different levels of respect. I will always be using the polite
form, both for obvious reasons and not-so-obvious reasons I will specify in
the next chapter.

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Further pronunciation guidelines:

While not absolutely necessary to learn, these extra guidelines will make

your Korean sound much more fluent when speaking quickly. When speaking
slowly and pronouncing each syllable they arent necessary but if you want to
master the language and start whipping around magic like a real caster they
will help a lot. You will find most rules make sense in order to make speech
smoother and easier to speak faster. Remember that how the word is written
doesnt change, this is purely for pronunciation only.
Whenever ,

, come before an , or an they are pronounced

, , , respectively. Also

Note: This does not mean you change how it is written, it still written
the same, it is only the pronunciation that changes.
When comes before a or a , it changes to an (m) sound.

(ham-ni-da)
(seum-ni-da)
When comes before a or a , it changes to an (n) sound.
(ban-neun-da)
When comes before a or a, it changes to an (ng) sound.
(as in sing)

(mawng-neun-da)

More on :

When is next to a double L sound is pronounced. Like so:

(il-lyawn)
(sil-la)

Whenever comes after any consonant other than another or ,


it is pronounced as

124

(sim-ni)
(sawng nyu)

CASTING MAGIC

Wards

Wards and their defensive properties were outlined in Chapter 5 but what
follows is how to actually cast themby warming up with tongue twisters
before a game session. Though you can use these tongue twisters to cast wards
on yourself at any time, they work best as an exercise to be done before the
game session starts to get you used to speaking Korean that session.
Characters can only have one ward on them at any time, what kind
of ward they try to put up is up to them. It does not cost Drama Points to
activate a wardthey only need to be said correctly. Two tongue twisters
done properly in succession allow for a ward to be cast, and, once cast they
cannot be used again for the game session by that character.

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First tier wards

First tier wards are simple tongue twisters that are cast by these exercises

designed to help and practice consonant differences: 4 from each column


must be completed in order to activate a first tier ward and, once that set is
used, it cannot be used again for that game session for that character.

WARD

,,

(tal, ddal, dal)

,,

(pal, bbal, bal)

,,

(kal,ggal,gal)

,,

(chal,jjal,jal)

,,

(kee,ggee,gee)

,,

(pee,bbee,bee)

,,

(cho,jjo,jo)

,,

t(taw,ddaw,daw)

,,

(cha-cha, jja-jja, ja-ja)

,,

(ko-ko, ggo-ggo, go-go)

,,

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PRONUNCIATION

(pee,bbee,bee)

,,

(too-too,ddoo-ddoo,doo-doo)

,,

(a-cha,a-jja,a-ja)

,,

(wi-qui,wi-ggui,wi-gui)

,,

(oo-choo,oo-jjoo,oo-joo)

,,

(aw-paw,aw-bbaw,aw-baw)

CASTING MAGIC

Second tier wards

Second tier wards more complicated and must be pronounced both as

perfectly and as quickly as you can while maintaining proper pronunciation.

WARD

.

?

,
.

.

Third tier wards

Third tier wards are very difficult are reserved for the truly difficult

tongue twisters. They can only be cast once per game session but any one
tongue twister is enough to cast a third tier ward.

WARD

,

.

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Further Learning with


the Master System

While learning everything in this chapter is everything you need to know


to speak correct Korean pronunciation, the Master System details higher
level skills once you have gotten used to Korean and built up a vocabulary
in the Apprentice System. The Master System delves into detail on grammar
patterns you will need for everyday use as follows:

Augmentationadjectives.

Clairvoyancequestions.

Conditioningadverbs.

Dispellingnegatives.

Healingasking for things.

Illusionsimple sentences.

Strikinglocation, body parts.

Summoningforms of speechformal and impolite.

Telekineticlocation, direction, prepositions.

Temporaltime, numbers.
Because some of the skills you learn in certain types of magic will be

used far more often than others they will be presented to you in an order that
addresses the language learning aspect of the game rather than alphabetically
for ease of reference.

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The Prodigy System


T

he Prodigy System is designed so that people can jump into it with


no prior knowledge of Korean and without having to learn a lot of
vocabulary. Despite that, knowledge of the writing system goes a
longway, so if you find yourself getting frustrated, you should go back

and learn the basics.

In the Prodigy System, you choose one of the seven nouns and one of

the six verbs that you place together and speak aloud to cast a spell of any
desired effect you can think of.

The Nouns

The nouns can be divided up into the elementsearth, air, water and
fire along with the senses, magic and life. When casting spells, a player
determines which of these categories they wish to affect and what kind of
magic they are using.
Nouns always come before verbs.
Earth represents anything coming from the ground, including metals.
Air has to do with air, wind or weather; water with anything liquid, fire with
heat and light, the senses with anything affecting the five senses (smell, taste,
touch, sight and sound), power (as well as force, energy, or strength), and
living things represent anything alive.

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The Prodigy System

Noun Table
EARTH

AIR

WATER

(ddang)

(ba-ram)

(mool)

FIRE

SENSES POWER

(bool) (o-gam) (heem)

LIVING THINGS

(saeng-mool)

The Verbs

Verbs are the second half of a spell and signify the action, or effect the
spell will have on an object, a person or the environment. Create has to do
with the making or creation of something that was not previously there and
can be used to add to the properties of the target (a blade could be made
hot, an illusion could be created). Compulsions exert your will or force over
something, it can also be used to enchant an object, to call a creature, animal
or person to you or to move an object. A transmutation is actually a special
kind of compulsion that changes one property in a subject to anotherit
does not remove or create a property, only changes it (changing rain drops
into metal, fire into water). The perceive verb deals with divination or the
acquisition of information. Damage has to do with spells cast with the intent
to do harm in some way. Remove has to do with the removal or elimination
of an existing property in the target (the property of heat or light might be
removed from fire, for example).

Verb Table

CREATE
COMPEL TRANSMUTE
PERCEIVE DAMAGE

(man-deulaw-yo)

(shikyaw-yo)

(byawn-hwa
shi-kyaw-yo)

(a-rahbwa-yo)

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The Prodigy System

(haechyaw-yo)

REMOVE

(awpsae-yo)

Using Drama Points


to Cast Spells

When casting spells there is a set of guidelines you need to follow.


Spells are always a maximum of five points, unless a group of magicians are
pooling their energy to do a ritual spell (rituals can be found in Chapter 11).
Whendetermining how many Drama Points you need to spend on a spell
start withone drama point and then follow these guidelines:

Add a point to affect the scale of a spell. Making a person a few feet
taller for a scene only requires one point, making someone as tall as a
house for a scene requires an addition point. Lighting a book on fire
only requires one point, lighting an entire bookcase on fire requires an
additional point.

Add a point for extreme situations i.e. being chased and wanting to
cast quickly, hallucinating or sensory deprivation.

Add a point to deal another wound, one point per wound. One Drama
Point inflicts one wound.

Add a point to increase the quality of a spell like an illusion or


transformation. When casting an illusion, one point will only affect
or simulate one sense and an additional point for every two senses is
required i.e. if the illusion is visible it will not be tangible, have an odor
or taste like anything, etc.

Add a point for each additional property you add or remove from an
object. If you want to make a fire not give off any light you only need
to spend one point, if you want it to not give off any light and to give
off a particular smell or sound instead of heat then you need to spend
an additional point.

Add a point to increase the duration of a spell. If you want to maintain


an illusion for a scene one point is enough, if you want to sustain the
spell for the whole day at least one additional drama point would have to
be spent, more if the spell was deemed particularly intricate or complex

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by the Negotiator and tableparticularly spells that wound in combat.


Sustaining a wall of flame costs the number wounds it does to a target
per turn in combat, whereas sustaining an illusion for the better part of
a day would only require one extra drama point.

NOTE: Negating a spell always requires spending the same number


of Drama Points that was required to cast the spell. The counter spell must
also be pronounced clearly and properly just like casting a normal spell.

Hallestorm

Increases and augments any fire in a room or can be used to augment


an already-cast fire spell to make it all that more effective (can be used with
any other types of magic by using the appropriate noun)
The Victors Infinite Variable

Allows the user to calculate a multitude of variables and what if


scenarios in a split second; the more variables the more difficult the spell but
is used to choose a best scenario or to unconsciously process a great deal of
data and act as if on instinct.
Lojkas Linking Effect

Causes links and connections between people, places and things to


manifest visually between things written down by the caster.
Elder Rune Form

A number of ritual chants spoken aloud while performing Taekwondo


katas; effects vary depending on the kata but can be used to increase reaction
time or to increase speed or strength.

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The Prodigy System

Espiritus Million Faces(noun)

Changes or completely transforms the appearance of the caster for a


set period of time. Can be used to adjust physical appearance, appear to be
someone else or even to transform into a completely different creature
Hotsons Nourishing Wind

Conjures a faintly transparent, perfect mango; consuming this magical


fruit grants immunity to sleep deprivation, hunger and thirst for a period
of time.
Mezzasalmas Reality Shift

Alters probabilities in the casters favor for a short time; during said time
the caster will find that things go well for them, they are in the right place
and the right time and they are just plain lucky.
Huangs Counterbalance

Nulls or negates a spell being cast or in effect.


Words on Wings

Words are written on a sheet of paper and the recipients name is


whispered. Upon blowing on the letters, they are carried away by the wind
to the recipient (who needs to have a sheet ready to receive the letter.)
Rowes Repulsion Ray

Pushes a person or object away from the caster or pushes the caster away
from the object or person instead.
Hex

Prevents technology from fizzing out or breaking when around the


caster even within the confines of the school and under wards designed to
block technology.
Information Architecture

Used to combine two spell effects into one by adding an additional


property to a spell.

135

The Prodigy System

136

The Prodigy System

The Apprentice System

he Apprentice System requires a familiarity with the Korean alphabet,


Hangeul, and practice speaking some Korean words like the thirteen
nouns and verbs found in the Prodigy System. The Apprentice
Systembuilds on the same foundation established in the Prodigy

System ofusing a noun and verb in combination to cast a spell that has the
desiredeffect but in the Apprentice System, there are no thirteen words to
fall backon. Whenever you cast a spell you must choose a noun and verb to
suit the situation you hope to achieve by casting. While some examples and a
few nouns and verbs follow, online or portable English to Korean dictionaries
are a good idea to have at the table so that you can learn and reference new
words whenever you need to cast a spell.
Another skill you will have to learn is verb conjugation. In the
ProdigySystem there are only thirteen words and they are already conjugated
foryou in present tense, polite speech. Since the most common form of
speech to anyone older than you or anyone you are meeting for the first time
is polite speech, and the other forms of speech take minutes to learn, polite
speech is the standard you will learn from for the rest of the book. When
you get to the Master System different forms of speech are addressed in the
Summoning section.

137

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

Verb Conjugation

When looking up verbs in the dictionary or online, you will find all verbs
in their infinitive form. All verbs will end with . In order to conjugate the
verb in the polite form you remove the ending and put either or

depending on the vowel in the previous syllable.


/
is the infinitive form for the verb to eat. To make it polite, you
remove the ending and replace it with . If you look at the vowel in
you will see that it is a and so you match the vowels when choosing
an endinglike with like. (to be small) changes to since
the vowel in is an . unless the last vowel is or
. These are the most common endings, most verbs will take on the
ending but there are more rules to learn when conjugating verbs.

Consonant Endings

There are, unfortunately, some more rules to complicate matters. When

a verb ends with either , or there are certain rules that must be
followed.

+=
If a verb ends with you have to check and see if the vowel proceeding
it was , if it was then changes to . For example, (to listen to)
changes to (deu-law-yo). Whereas (to close) doesnt change
and becomes (da-da-yo).

If a verb ever ends with then it must be conjugated with . This


ending is only used in this special instance. For example, (to be
beautiful) changes to (a-reum-da-wo-yo) when conjugated.

+ = dropped
Lastly, any verbs that end with and the preceding vowel is then
you drop the . For example, (to be better) changes to
(na-ah-yo) when conjugated. Whereas (to take off (clothes)) holds
onto the and becomes (baw-saw-yo) when conjugated.

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THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

Vowel Endings

If a verbs last vowel is then it changes to when conjugated.


For example, verbs like:

(to drink)

(ma-shi-da

ma-syaw-yo)

(to teach)

(ga-reu-chi-da

ga-reu-chyaw-yo)

(to strike/hit)

(chi-da

chaw-yo)

(to wait)

(gee-da-ri-da

gee-da-ryaw-yo)

If the verbs last vowel is then it changes to (because of the


in the ). For example:

(to learn)

(bae-oo-da

bae-wo-yo)

(to smoke)

(pee-oo-da

pee-wo-yo)

(to give)

(joo-da

jo-yo)

139

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM


If the verbs last vowel is then it changes to (because of the
in ). For example:

(to come)

(o-da

wa-yo)

(to look at, see)

(bo-da

bwa-yo)

lose the

If the last vowel is then it is dropped before adding or


(if there is a or in the preceding syllable). For example:

(to be big)

(keu-da

kaw-yo)

(to be busy)

(ba-bbeu-da

ba-bba-yo)

(to write)

(sseu-da

ssaw-yo)

double
If the last syllable is then the is dropped and an extra is added
to the next syllable like so:

140

(to be fast)

(bba-reu-da

bbal-la-yo)

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

(to not know)

(mo-reu-da

mol-la-yo)

(to call; to sing a song)

(boo-reu-da

bool-law-yo)

Special Cases:
There are also a group a verbs that dont require an / ending
at all, just remove the and slap on a instead. Unfortunately, these must
be memorized. Verbs like (to sleep), (to meet), (to
buy), (to go) all need only their ending to be replaced with (

, , , ).
(to become)
(to be)
(to do)

()

Some Common verbs to get you started:

141

(to burn)

(tae-oo-da

tae-wo-yo)

(to freeze)

(awl-da

aw-law-yo)

(to hurt)

(da-chi-da

da-chyaw-yo)

(to heal)

(a-mool-da

a-mu-law-yo)

(to make)

(man-deul-da

man-deu-law-yo)

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

142

(to break/shatter)

(ggae-da

ggae-yo)

(to remember)

(gi-awk-ha-da

gi-awk-hae-yo)

(to forget)

(ee-jaw-baw-ree-da

ee-jaw-baw-ryaw-yo)

(to send)

(bo-nae-da

bo-nae-yo)

(to receive)

(bad-da

ba-da-yo)

(to be angry)

(hwa-na-da

hwa-na-yo)

(to relax/calm down)

(jin-jawng-ha-da

jin-jawng-hae-yo)

(to love)

(sa-rang-ha-da

sa-rang-hae-yo)

(to dislike)

(shi-raw-ha-da

shi-raw-hae-yo)

(to throw)

(dawn-ji-da

dawn-jyaw-yo)

(to move)

(oom-ji-gi-da

oom-ji-gyaw-yo)

(to identify/investigate)

(a-rah-bo-da

a-rah-bwa-yo)

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

(to hide/conceal)

(soom-gi-da

soom-gyaw-yo)

(to write)

(sseu-da

ssaw-yo)

(to write)

(eel-da

eel-gaw-yo)

(to know)

(al-da

a-rah-yo)

(to not know)

(mo-reu-da

mol-la-yo)

(change/alter)

(byawn-ha-da

byawn-hae-yo)

(to transform)

(byawn-hwa-shi-ki-da

byawn-hwa-shi-kyaw-yo)

Hirbels Propaganda

Bombards an area with psychic trauma in the form of nightmarish,


frightening images. Anyone caught in the area while the spell persists can
be wounded.
Youngers Adeptus Comprehension(object)

A spell variation that shows the history of an object in the casters mind;
the more powerful the spell the more of its history the caster learns. Originally
used to learn or recall the contents of a book.
Unseen Prevalent Net of Truths

Creates a spell that connects to any existing, widespread network to tap


into and gather specific information.

143

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

Cats String

Creates a red string of fate in the mind of the caster that leads them to
an object or person that can help them with whatever it is they wish to do
most when casting the spell.
Wellens Warmth

Imbues the caster with continuous warmth and heat; requires whale
blubber.
Hindleys Quantum Sink

Creates a small energy ball that negates gravity around it for a period of
time. When under the Quantum Sink effect the target cannot move as they
float toward and around the spell.
Flavius' Unbreakable Bond

Bonds together two things so that they are impossible to break apart.
Variations have been used to bond together abstract concepts like spirits
and souls.
Jaens Animal Empathy

Imbues the caster with the instincts and characteristics of any animal or
can be projected onto another. If the spell is cast while touching an animal,
the caster can take on the feelings and emotions of the target and project
them onto another.
Chois Confounding Casting
Used to slow reaction times and disorient the target.
Kazs Unequalizer(True Name)

Mutes the target and prevents them from speaking or vocalizing and
noise; requires the targets True Name.
Huangs Decree

Used to wrest control of a spell away from the caster, a successful casting
allows the magician to change the target of the spell or to change the nature
of the spell itself (changing a water spell to ice, a haste spell to slow, etc.)

144

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

Nicks Notice Not

Creates an effect around the caster that prevents others from noticing
and paying attention to the caster.
Ravens Wind Guardians

Summons intelligent wind spirits that conjure gales to throw back and
prevent anyone or anything from attempting to enter a specific area.
Eugnot Retsiwt(name backwards)

By chanting the targets name backwards, it causes them to stumble over


words and phrases when speaking.
Childers K(no)w Self

Through meditation and self-understanding, the student is able to remove


themselves from the universe for a short time. During this time they can move
about the world as it would have been had they never existed. They can fully
interact with the world, but no one will have any memories of the student,
and any impact the student has had on the world is, temporarily, removed.
This spell is used for self-discovery and cutting class.
Redactors Revenge(word unable to speak)

Makes it so the target becomes incapable of saying one specific word,


though its synonyms are still able to be spoken.
Find Yourself

Calms and alleviates stress and is used to center oneself in stressful times.
Breaker Breaker

Imbues a container with magical energy; any two items that are placed
inside react violently and unpredictably to one another within 5 seconds
The Oandasan Effect

Removes the moisture from a room and turns everything into paper.
Clean Hear, Calm Words

Allows the caster to avoid any social faux-pas for as long as they remain
calm. Strong feelings cause the spell to begin functioning erratically.

145

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

146

THE APPRENTICE SYSTEM

The Master System

he Master System requires a working knowledge of the Korean alphabet


as well as some basic vocabulary. When casting a spell using the Master
System you always use a full, complete sentence. More than that,
depending on the type of magic and effect you want the spell to have

there is a certain type of sentence you are required to speak that involves
specific, target vocabulary to help you learn a type of speech and grammar
pattern associated with that type of magic.
It will be assumed that you are starting at the beginning of this Chapter
and learning to use different types of magic in order, starting with illusion
magic. Illusion magic has the rules for building a complete, simple sentence
and the grammar you need to do so. As you progress onward you will build
upon that basic foundation and though you may wish to learn certain types
of magic first, it is recommended you start with illusion magic first before
pursuing any other.

147

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Illusion Magic

Illusions are any spells that simulate one or more of the five senses in a
completely life-like manner so as to be indistinguishable from reality. Illusion
spells are cast by making complete sentences using the pattern in Korean to
say something is.
Great magicians wield great power over all things; with simple statements
they literally change the world around them. However, for young initiates
like yourself who do not yet have the power with which to work great change
on the world, it is sometimes more effective to appear to affect such change.
There is great power in illusions and these fundamental building blocks are
the base upon which all the other magics are built. Statements of whether
something is true or not, exists or not are always illusions.
The difference between casting an illusion that shows your skin turning
to rock and actually doing so lies in whether you say something is or is not
(illusion) or whether you use certain adverbs and adjective along with verbs
that you will learn later. Simple statements such as My skin is rock would
be classified as an illusion whereas I turn my skin to rock would turn the
casters skin to rock.

()
In Korean, the verb will always come last in a sentence and, depending
on how it is conjugated, will also carry with it a certain meaning (both in
terms of politeness and other context like tense, etc.).
To build a sentence in Korean, the subject comes first, followed by the
object, followed by the verb. Generally speaking, the more crucial or important
the words and context the closer to the end of the sentence they will be.
SUBJECT then OBJECT then VERB


My book is blue.

148

THE MASTER SYSTEM

The particle attached to (me) signifies possession, thus (me)


becomes my (), which is often written and spoken as (my). The
same goes for you () and your ( or ).

means blue, and the ~ attached to it means is. By


speaking this sentence and infusing the words with your will, the book seems
to become blue until you release your will.
The / particle marks the topic of a sentence; because (book)
has a terminal character the particle with a zero character () in it must be
used. If the word was (staff/rod), you would attach the particle
to it since it doesnt have a terminal character.

.
Kyle is transparent/clear.
The subject particle (/) marks the subject of a sentence. when
there is a terminal character (as in ) and for when there isnt.

149

THE MASTER SYSTEM


It is important to know how to dispel every spell you cast. If no one were
to dispel Kyles illusion, he would remain transparent until the spell wore off.
The negative is always the same and never has in front of it because it is
never attached to a word; it is always a separate construct.
To dispel a previously cast illusion you need only cast its negative.

.
Kyle is not transparent.

.
The book is not blue.
Take some time to familiarize yourself with creating simple illusions.
Practice with some of the following combinations and make your own spells.

150

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Being Vague

When first starting out learning a language and using the Master System

you will not be able to be as clear when casting spells as you will be later on
after you have built up your vocabulary and grammar, until then, use pronouns
when necessary or when you cannot find the word you are looking for.
By putting (that) or (this) (ee) in front of a noun it becomes:
this/that noun.
Since (thing) is used so much, it is often shortened to when both
written and spoken.

particle makes the noun it is attached to plural. this


thing becomes these things, that thing becomes
The

(those things), i.e.


That person is transparent.


This staff is black

MORE ON PARTICLES
Particles are a difficult thing to learn for English speakers. In English,
our context is mostly derived from word order in a sentence and
we extrapolate context from there. In Korean, particles serve as
grammatical markers that assign meaning and context. While common
sense and context can still allow a sentence to be understood in
Korean even without particles, it can be confusing and vague and it
is simply incorrect at higher levels of usage to leave them out.

151

THE MASTER SYSTEM

The Subject Particle and the


Topic Particle /, /

This is can be one of the more confusing particles to use.


The / particle puts focus on the noun before it (often the subject).
The / particle can be used to either (a) mark a noun as a sentence
topic, (b) show contrast or (c) mark the noun as assumed or old information.
So whats the difference? When first mentioning or bringing new
information into a conversation, you mark it with the / particle. After
mentioning it, if it is mentioned or repeated again in the same context the

/ particle is used instead.


?
What is this (thing)?

.
Thats an umbrella.
Also, the / particle is often used to compare or to reflect a question.

?
(What about) this?
We use the / particle here to show a comparison and to mark a
new topic, despite it being new information.
If I said ? It would be translated simply as This? In the
context of Pass me that thing over there. This?

. .
The professor is a professor. But I am a student.
The / particles here are placed to show the contrast between the
nouns.

152

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Practice combining these words to form sentences


Subjects:

,
,




Adjectives:

(hers)

(their)

(this thing)

(that thing)

Is:

(me, mine)
(you, your)
(his)

Objects:
(book)
Is not:

(staff)


(clothes)

(body)

(animal)

(person)

(object)

(living thing)

(teacher)
(student)
(wall)

(floor)

153

THE MASTER SYSTEM

(black)
(white)
(green)

()

(transparent)

The Object Particle/

Since there is a subject and an object particle in Korean, it is not really

important which comes first as it does in English (and is the reason why
particles can be important in Korean). The / particle marks the direct
object of the verb.


Father sees baby.


Baby sees father.


Father sees baby.


Baby sees father.
So you can see that if both the subject and the object particle were
omitted from a sentence it would become ambiguous we wouldnt know
who was doing what. If only one particle was dropped then we would know
what was happening.

/(be, exists/is not, does not exist)


The / pattern is often used to describe possession but
can be similar to using the () pattern. For example:

It is a book/ They are books


There is a book (somewhere)/ (Someone) has got a book/There are some
books (somewhere)

154

THE MASTER SYSTEM


Its not a book/ They arent books


There isnt a book (somewhere)/ (Someone) hasnt got a book/ There
arent any books (somewhere)


Its at school/Theres (one/some) at school/ They are at school


Its not a school/They arent schools


Its not a school/Theres no one at school/ There isnt any school at school
In game terms, this is a good pattern for the creation or abolition of
illusions. With both this and the () pattern under your belt you will
be able to both create or abolish illusions or modify things already in existence.

, AND POSSESSION
/ can also be used to express possession.
? (who has alcohol?) or
([I] have a girlfriend)

155

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Telekinetic Magic

Telekinetic magic is all about being able to specify relative location and
to express direction.

Here and There with /

Since illusions are abstract in themselves it is best to at least specify

vaguely where the illusion youre casting is. means here while
means there and they both take the location particle .

Relative location

/////// all specify location and, if followed


by the ~ particle, mark relative location. They can also be attached to
nouns in their basic form to form nouns like front door, , or the floor
above, .



in front (of)
behind
between

below
inside
outside

above

Right and Left with/

is most often used to specify right or left but can is also used for spatial
direction. It is most often used with or to specify either right or left.
()

[it] is below

go left

You could also say () , but you would use when


directing someone so as to point them in the correct direction. You would
also use when being vague (that direction over there) kind of feeling

Its that way.

156

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Toward or in the direction of,

by means of with ~()


The () particle is attached to a noun in order to either show

direction or to express by or by means of.


I move the pen to [toward] the right


(One)strikes with (by means of) the hand


Go by bus

In/at or to/from with ~

The particle attaches to a noun in order to show location.


There is a ball in front of me


The professor is here (either pointing somewhere, or meaning in the
immediate area)


There is no person there. (Theres nobody (over) there)


Were in the classroom

?
Where is it?


I am not here.

157

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Striking Magic

Striking magic is used for hitting precise targets or locations. The size of
your target, whether it be on the human body or not, is represented by the
approximate size equivalent of parts of the body. In particular, striking magic
is used most often in conjunction with augmentation magic so as to create
spells with both precision and the specific qualities desired by the magician
casting the spell like a beam of heat designed to strike a specific target or a
cold ray that needs to hit an enemy behind a door that is just visible through
the door lock.

()
Head

Ears

Eyes

Nose

Mouth

Neck/throat
Shoulders
Back

Chest

Hair

Arms
Elbow
Hands
Fingers
Waist
Legs
Knee
Feet
Toes


I hit the nine-tailed fox in the face.


(I) cut the monsters Achilles tendon.

158

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Augmenting Magic

Adjectives can be used to express performing an action in a different or


special way essentially it is a way of assigning particular, specific conditions
and qualities to a spell. To make an adjective out of a descriptive or processive
verb ending with , simply remove the and attach to the base
of the dictionary ending. With almost all other verbs, removing the

ending and adding either (if there is a terminal character) or just


(if there is not a terminal character) will make a verb an adjective. The only
exception are verbs that end with in the terminal character. In this case,
instead of adding the ending, you remove the part of

(so that you are left with ) and then place in the terminal position.


( )
I spit hot acid on her.


I freeze her [solid] with my cold breath.


I hit Kyle with my hard fist.


I throw a sticky spider web on him.


With my augmented [strong] legs, I jump over the wall.

159

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Dispelling Magic

Dispelling magic is used when you need or want to negate an existing


spell or magic in your immediate area.

Short Negatives with /

In order to make a verb negative either or is placed immediately

before the verb.

means not while means cannot.


wont go

cant go


This form does not work with descriptive verbs (verbs translated as is ~)

Long Negatives with /

Verbs that have attached to them are in the suspective form. This form

is made by simply by taking the dictionary form of a verb and substituting the

on the end for . Once in the suspective form, various endings can be
added to change the meaning of a sentence. The (ji a-na-yo)
and (ji mot-hae-yo) express negation and they never change
form. Note the difference with the other systems, instead of casting the same
spell with the same amount of spell points used, with the Master System you
are required to cast its negative.


The teacher is not here.


I cant play piano.

160

THE MASTER SYSTEM

In order to make negative commands you attach the

ending and

then add .


Dont go.


Dont look.

Healing Magic

Healing works a bit differently from normal spells. If one were to look
at a healing spell they would see an extremely complex weaving of patterns
so intricate that most mages would have to spend a great deal of time just to
parse. However, magicians have found that is possible to create complex spells,
like healing, indirectly through ancient rituals and prayers which have been
collected, restored, taught and passed down through the generations. Magicians
found that through the use of these ancient, simple prayers incredibly complex
patterns and spells are essentially woven for the magician. It is a vast field of
study in the magics and some view it as extremely dangerous since a magician
cannot be sure who the source of said magics is. While a prayer spell does
not require faith in order to be cast, the fact that these prayers work often
leads to magicians struggling with or finding newfound faith on their own.
Prayers are ancient and far ranging, dedicated any number of deities, Gods
and prophets. Healing magic is represented mechanically by the grammar
patterns required for asking for things.

161

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Asking for things with / or

The easiest way to ask for something is with the verb (give) which

when conjugated (++) becomes . Also commonly used is the


highest polite speech (found in summoning magic) which is the
form, used far more often. In addition, instead of using or (my or me)

is more commonly used (for both). is a diminutive form (therefore


polite way) of saying me or my.
The ~ form means please do (something) for me),

(to do). So while would be used for give


me (something), would be used to say please do (such and
coming from

such) for me.


Please heal my friend.


Please fix my leg.

162

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Conditioning Magic

Conditioning magic is used to add conditions to someone or something,


good or bad, and conditioning spells are cast by using adverbs.
Change or modify a verb by removing the ending on it and attaching

, or . Just by taking the ending off


and attaching you make an adverb. Using the pattern after a
condition signifies making or forcing a condition on somebody or something.
This type of spell could be used to knock someone out by saying

I K.O. him (literally: I make it so he is K.Oed)


(happy)

(happily)

(sad)

(sadly)


I make Kyle tired.


I make Jason strong.

, ,
I make Jason stronger, faster, better

163

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Connecting Sentences

After a previous sentence, you can follow up with another and show a

connection between them by starting off with one of the following:

(so)
(even so)
(and also)
/

(but/and then/by the way)

An easy way to build a complex sentence is to attach (and) to the


verb after removing the ending. - can be attached to a noun and
means and/as well but can also mean withespecially when attached to
a persons name. In the same way, - can be attached the end of a verb
to connect it to the next sentence. It often simply signifies you are going to
reveal more information about what you were speaking about so can be either
a continuation or could also add a and/but then nuance to a sentence.


I make my skin hard and withstand the fire.


There are no cigarettes or alcohol here.


I am eating [a meal] with Kyle.

I make Jason strong. But I make Kyle tired.

164

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Clairvoyance Magic

Spells that allow for clairvoyance can be extremely powerful spells and
work a bit different from spells where a creature is summoned and then
questioned. Summoned creatures are not beholden to the caster and so
are free to reply or not, tell the truth or not, etc. Where clairvoyant spells
draw their knowledge from is the subject of much discourse in the wizard
community. Many believe it is from the collective unconscious, but it is a
difficult theory to prove. In order to cast spells that predict the future or to
glean required information, questions are put forth in the language of magic.
While questions can be asked by simply taking a sentence and changing the
intonation, these spells require a different pattern. Sentences are made in
the same way except for verbs; the base is removed and, instead,
is added for spells seeking information (not having to do with the future).
These spells are less, or more, difficult depending on how readily available
the information is (how many people know said information).

?
Where is Kyle now?
If everybody around me knows where Kyle is, the spell is much easier to
cast compared to a spell where no one around me does. If the information
that is needed is readily available and common knowledge, it is a simple one
point spell. Depending on how difficult or how rare the information is to
find, more Drama Points will need to be spent, as per the chart in the section
for Clairvoyance magic.. In addition, due to the nature of the spell, it may
be important as to where the spell is cast so as to draw from the proper pool
of knowledge.

165

THE MASTER SYSTEM

The Future

When asking questions to do with the future, the future is signified

with the removal of the base of a verb and the addition of (if there
is a terminal character) and in the terminal character. There are several
patterns that use this concept, the most common being the ()
form. This can be used to either state a future action or to ask about a future
one. The () ? is always used as a question as it means shall we?
or perhaps, shall I?.

?
Are you going to it this?

?
Are you going to do [it]?

?
Shall I[we] eat this?

?
Shall I[we] do [it]?
The () can be used or interpreted as should I/we? as well
when posing questions to the magical ether. When casting spells that seek
out information it is a fairly simple decision made by both the player and the
GM when negotiating the intent of the spell. If the information is possible
to retrieve a point total is agreed upon, failure negotiated (maybe the spell
fails, is corrupted, maybe the caster receives wrong information, etc.) and
then the spell cast. However, when casting spells that seek to look into the
future spells work a bit differently. These spells allow players to declare what
happens in the future within a time frame decided upon by the player and
the Negotiator certain.
As always, intent of the spell and failure is negotiated and, if successful,
the player may ask a question and then answer his own question or the
Negotiator may answer it if the answer is dependent on knowledge only the

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THE MASTER SYSTEM

GM has. These spells are a fun way to foreshadow events or just all around
good fun. Depending on the specificity, time frame of the question, and effect
on other characters, more points are needed to cast the spell. For example:
(QUESTION)

?
Should I eat this?
(ANSWER)

No.
Would be a very general sequence, not much information is revealed
whereas:
(QUESTION)

?
Will Jason kill Kyle?
(ANSWER)

.
Yes.
While relatively simple a question, it affects a character other than his
own. This forces another character to incorporate this into the story so,
while very cool, it costs an extra point per character involved. As the spell
becomes more specific and/or complicated in order to carry out (one point
per scene necessary to play out the eventseven if the events are no longer
thought to be happening). In addition, all characters involved must agree to
the negotiating and result of the spell beforehandthe same goes for any
non-player characters not controlled by the players (and therefore controlled
by the GM). This limits spells to being able to predict scenes up to five scenes
in advance or for up to five characters to be involved.

167

THE MASTER SYSTEM

A sage may also try to reel in knowledge or a flash of the future in


a general way from a pool of knowledge surrounding him by expressing a
want or wish. This spell is also very contingent on the GM and the players
agreeing to the negotiation of intent and it can never be specific. Visions
such as these always have no answers and only a series of visual images are
broadcast to the casternarrated by either the GM or caster as per prior
negotiation. For example:


I want to become rich (a rich person)
After such spells, if cast successfully, the GM or player may describe a
montage of images depicting buried treasure and immediate surroundings, a
valuable artifact, a nearby student with a lot of money, etc. The results should
be vague, general and fun.


I want to get married.


I want to leave (get out) of here.

168

(Who)
(What)
(When
(Where)
(Why)
(How)

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Temporal Magic

A master of time is able to speed up or stop time. In order to cast spells


having to do with freezing or the slowing down of time a caster casts a spell
by telling time and using the past tense. Korean is unfortunately a bit difficult
when it comes to numbers due to there being two sets of numbers used for
different things. Just for telling time you need to learn both Systemsthe
pure Korean numbers and the Sino-Korean ones derived from Chinese.

Numbers
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

SINO KOREAN
NUMBERS

PURE KOREAN NUMBERS

(eel)
(ee)
(sam)
(sa)
(o)
(yook)
(chil)
(pal)
(goo)
(ship)
(ship-eel)
(ship-ee)

() (ha-na, han)
()(dool, doo)
()(seht, seh)
()(neht, neh)
(da-sawt)
(yaw-sawt)
(eel-gop)
(yaw-dawl)
(a-hop)
(yawl)
()(yawl-ha-na, yawl-han)
()(yawl-dool, yawl-doo)

The good news is that once you learn 1-10 it is easy to learn the rest
for the Sino-Korean system and it is used more often in Korean for bigger
numbers. When telling time the hour always uses pure Korean number and
for minutes Sino-Korean numbers are used. For example:

169

THE MASTER SYSTEM

12:30

,
The here means hour, and means minute. For time, the abbreviated
form for pure Korean numbers are always used, or when coming before a noun:

One year [old]


Twice a month (twice in one month)
10:30


11:15


12:12


The (ban) here means half .
In order to cast a spell that stops time, a magician must look at the
current time in real life and say from what time it will stop and from what
time will time resume.
For every one turn (five minutes of real world timethis does not mean
that a round in game actually corresponds to five minutes of real-world time)
a Drama Point is needed to slow down time (or speed it up). In addition, for
every character the spell affects (excluding the caster) in the immediate area
(re: room) an additional Drama Point must be expended. If there are two
people in the room and the caster wishes to stop time for 5 minutes (one
turn) for both parties, two Drama Points would be needed in order to cast the
spell, 3 if there was another person (or for another 5 minutes/one turn), etc.

170

THE MASTER SYSTEM

FROM ()
UNTIL ()
If the caster wanted to stop time from 11:12 until 11:17 he would say:

(I) stopped time from 11:12 until 11:17


The past tense is used here because of the intentto stop time. If the caster
wanted to speed up time (to cast a haste spell on the room), he would say:



I am going to change the time from 11:12 to 11:17

Past Tense

The past tense is signified by conjugating a verb as per normal but adding

to the terminal character of the verb. There are no irregular verbs, so


follow rules for conjugation and add the to signify past.

171

eat

ate

make

made

THE MASTER SYSTEM

Future Tense

The future tense follows the same rules as per the clairvoyant/sage section.

Take the verb, remove the ending, and then add (if there is a terminal
character) plus to signify future tense. There are a few patterns that most
commonly used with future tense however.


[I] am going to eat it (probable futurewill happen at some point)

[I] will eat it (immediate futurepromise, done in the near future)


[I] will probably eat it (presumptive futureguessing, vague)
The (gat-da) verb here means like or similar so can it could
be interpreted as It seems like [Ill] eat it.

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THE MASTER SYSTEM

Summoning Magic

Summoning a creature is an easy task for any magician but forcing the
receiver of the summons to obey can only be done if the magician casting the
spell has the targets True Name. All creatures have a True Name that can be
drawn out via magic. If a creatures True Name has not been drawn out it can
be summoned by using its general name (a cat may be summoned by calling
it a cat) whereas intelligent magical creatures all have True Names with which
you must cast the spell to compel and force the summoned target to answer
the spell.
The verb to summon is (to call/say) for non-magical creatures
or (summon) for magical ones. Summoned creatures are under
no obligation to be contained, restricted or forced to talk. The summoner will
have to use other spells to contain, restrict or compel the summoned creature.
However, any summoned creature forms a bond with the summoner in that
they are able to communicate through the language of magic if otherwise unable
to communicate. The creature only understands and speaks in the language
of magic via the bond and may speak normally, if possible, via the traditional
method. In order to converse with beings summoned via the (called)
method, characters must use low speech. In order to converse with beings
summoned via the (summoned) method, characters must use high
speech. Conversing in this way is limited to simple commands and questions.

Low Speech

Low speech, or impolite speech, is very easy. Sentences are spoken as

they are normally would be with the verb conjugated as usual but when by
dropping the at the end of the verb after conjugation. With that single
omission, the phrase becomes impolite speecheverything else is the sentence
remains exactly the same.

(follow me)

173

(What do you need?)


THE MASTER SYSTEM

High Speech

High speech, or polite speech, is a bit trickier to learn. In order to make

a sentence formal, an honorary suffix is attached to the verb.


When questioning or suggesting something like polite commands using
formal language, the is removed from the verb and (eu-sehyo) is attached to verbs that have terminal characters minus the for verbs
without a terminal character. In addition, and should is always replaced
with and you never use the () pattern in reference to your own
actions, if you are asked a question you always respond with polite speech,
the speech you have learned and by using instead of or .

Simple commands are often shortened to just the verb, whether it is


polite or not.

[]

[please] do it


[please] sit down

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THE MASTER SYSTEM

[]

Threats
C

oming up with threats can be one of the harder parts of the game since
they have to be challenging and interesting. If they are a lone threat
they need to be able to take a beating from multiple characters if they
get into a fight. Keep in mind that the number of points the threat is

worth does not necessarily mean how many wounds must be inflicted until
the threat is defeated or is killed. When a number on a threat card is reduced
to zero it simply means they are no longer a threat that session or their place
in the narrative is known and resolved in that game sessions story.

175

THREATS

Fights versus creatures capable of magic play out like a fight between
magiciansany creatures capable of magic can choose to defend or cast for
their round just like player characters. Depending on how many characters
are going up against the threat, you might give the threat some wards, scrolls
or minions to help them out.
Do not be afraid to just narrate the enemy casting a spell successfully if
you are not confident in your own ability to speak the language when you are
the Negotiator. It is your job to provide conflict and to make sure threats are
threatening so do not hesitate to use a translation program to play a sentence
aloud for you or to take a stab at the sentence yourself and saying that the
spell succeeds because it needs to in order to keep tension in the fight. Try to
get as much language learning in as possible.
Fights with threats that do not cast spells work differently since they
cannot defend themselves against magic so, to compensate, give these kinds
of threats properties based on what it should have in order to be dangerous
and challenging for the group. If there are multiple characters it should
be tough and should be able to take several hits. Maybe it is has a magical
resistance or has cool abilities like seeing into the future or dazing characters
just by looking at them. There are any number of properties you can assign
a monster to make it more challengingmake it fast (maybe it can hit twice
in one round or act as if hasted), make it magically resistant (maybe it only
takes half damage from spells), make it smart (maybe it sends out minions
to deal with the characters first or it runs away when in trouble), make it
dangerous so it deals tons of wounds in one hit.
When you write down a threat on your threat card and assign a point
value there are a number of things you can do mechanically to make it more
interesting.
First, divide the total value assigned to the threat by two and then round
up. This is the number of points you use to assign the threat abilities to wound,
impose conditions and make it unique.

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THREATS

Assigning wounds: For every wound an attack inflicts, it costs one


point. For every ongoing wound it does, it costs two points.

Assigning negative conditions to attacks: Special conditions like


blindness or paralysis are made more potent by how many points are
put into them as it requires as many points to cure a character of that
condition. Giving a threats claw attack the ability to also inflicts an
easily curable blindness. They only need to spend a point to remove the
condition. If you spend 5 points to inflict a 5-point blindness then it is
far more serious and difficult to heal.

Assigning threats positive conditions: it costs one point per positive


condition. Assigning conditions is a great way to make a threat more
difficult to defeatgive it a condition like resistant to fire for one
point will reduce anything fire related by one point, hasted for one
point will allow them to act first in a fight, shrouded in mystery for
one point will reduce any magic used to find out information about it
by one point. Note that positive conditions do not replenishafter they
reduce a wound by one or an attempt to find information by one, etc.
they are no longer in effect and should be crossed off the card.

For threat cards that have several monsters in play (but are not swarms),
the total number of points are divvied up between each monster as the
player sees fit, equally or not e.g. If you want to put a villain on your
threat card and you want him to have some minions then you can divide
up the total number of points between the villain and his minions as you
see fit. Keep in mind that the total number of points on the card should
reflect all the monsters and creatures on itif only certain enemies get
eliminated mark them off the card as players spend Drama Points to
cast spells and lower the assigned value on the card. For large swarms
of creatures, count the entire swarm as one entity.

177

THREATS

Here are some tricks to consider when creating threatsmonsters in


particular:

If the opposition can cast spells make them as good as, or better, than
you and the cast of characters.

178

Give them minions to take hits for them.

Give them a ward to keep them going for at least an extra round.

THREATS

Do not be afraid to give the threat magic items or scrolls with which
they can cast spells or put up wards, cast higher level spells even if you,
as the Negotiator, do not yet have the fluency to cast difficult spells.
Remember though, as soon as the threat goes down all the players and
the cast of characters will be all over those items so know that the items
may end up in the hands of a protagonist or two. Establish rules for
items like scrollsif it benefits enemies it should benefit players (maybe
it allows the automatic casting of a spell despite pronunciation errors
but still requires Drama Points being used, or maybe it crumbles into
dust after a single use).

Try to make everything new, dangerous and unique as a Negotiator.


When introducing a threat into the narrative describe it to everyone as
if they have never seen it before. If they ask you if it is a troll, reply by
giving a cool description of what it looks like using at least two of the
senses and try to keep them guessingeven if it really is just a troll.

For the Master System, design challenges or threats (or at least most
of them) to be solved with the level of magic you and the other players
are currently at. Not all challenges need to be surmountable on the first
run through but remember that if the players can only do illusionary
magic, try to make it so challenges can be solved with illusionary magic.
All threats that do not cast spells are assumed to hit every turn. As the

total number of points on a threat card drops, the threat will start to act
slower. After losing 20% of its original value it drops down a speed tier. When
it drops so that it only has 20% remaining, it drops into the slowest speed tier.
Some things to keep in mind:

Positive conditions do not last forever, when the effects of a positive


condition are used once they are gone.

Positive conditions usually go toward stopping the number of points


on a threat card from being reduced or to make them act sooner in a fight.

As a threats points are reduced, it does not change how many wounds
they inflict, only their speed when deciding who goes first.

179

THREATS

180

THREATS

Optional Rules
T

181

his section is here to tweak how Magician plays or to add in some more
elements in play to spice things up or add a little variation as needed.

OPTIONAL RULES

Rituals

Rituals are spells that are cast by multiple magicians instead of just one.
This allows for the casting of spells that would normally be well beyond an
individual magician. Mechanically, rituals work the same way spells do except
magicians can pool their Drama Points together in any combination they
see fit in order to meet the number of points a spell requires. This allows for
some really great, flavorful and powerful spell casting. For example:

Lambes Gift

Three wooden Hahoe figures bearing claws or little blade-like weapons

have one sentence carved into each figure in Korean and are made from alder
wood (1.) Who rules the Kingdom? The King. (2.) Who rules the King? The
Duke. (3.) Who rules the Duke? The Devil! Under a full moon an alder tree
is magically grown. Wood is hewn from the tree and the magical figures use it
to carve a wooden figure of the magicians choosing that bestows either good
or bad luck on the individual it is given to. The shavings left over from the
carving bestow the opposite effect of the figurine on whoever carries them.

The Ninth Level Abstraction


of the Eternal Library

Completion of the ritual (which must be done in a Library under strange


and idiosyncratic auspices) aligns the casters with the mystic heart of their
paired librarygiving them enhanced senses while inside the library. This
explains why the creepiest librarians have eyes in the back of their head (a
rare side effect of the abstraction is that some wizards will grow actual eyes
in the back of their head). Being connected to the library in this way provides
other benefits to those enchantedmoving silently through the stacks, eidetic
recall of any books position and contents, etc. Few magicians are willing to
take on the spell due to the unfortunate sympathetic effect that any damage
to the library is also felt by the enchanter.

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OPTIONAL RULES

Mirror of Koreas Eighth Circle

Summons a magical spirit named Ryunho that provides the caster with

his magical mirror. The mirror itself takes the shape and form that reflects
the casters inner beauty. The mirror is used to see through lies or disguises
when light is reflected off the mirror and onto the target. If artificial light is
used, the mirror displays an image of the targets true inner-self and can be
used to detect lies, disguises or intent. If natural light (sun or moonlight) is
used, the targets outer appearance physically changes to reflect the targets
true inner-self for a short time. By doing so the target may lose any traces of
plastic surgery, an evil-hearted person will look monstrous and ugly, a cripple
may walk or grow limbs, an old person may look young, etc. If both sunlight
and moonlight is used the physical changes becomes permanent and both the
caster and the target loses all memories related to ever having their previous
outer appearance. If sources of light used is other than natural or artificial
(fire, electricity, or chemical), the effects of this mirror is unpredictable.
The mirror is returned to the spirit afterwards, who follows the carrier of
the mirror, appearing or not appearing in whatever form it pleases. It can
shape shift into anyone that has been the target of the mirror and collects
the physical appearances and the memories lost.

Bridic Binding Contract

Binds two beings together under a pact and set of rules and conditions.

If a party breaks the contract the binding kills them but the spell can only
be cast if both parties are willing.

Montes Coils of Ethereal Animation

Creates a tattoo on the targets skin which in which tiny serpents are

summoned and injected in until called upon. When activated, the serpents
flow out and animate objects or dead matter with a life of their own but
under the control of the caster for a set period of time.

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OPTIONAL RULES

Xuan Kun

Opens a localized, micro black hole that sucks in everything around it.
The number of points required for rituals should be quite high as most

of them bestow permanent effects so will affect campaign play greatly. During
brief campaigns or single play sessions they are unlikely to affect the game all
that much and, as such, I assign points required by how much it will affect the
game. Casting spells in Magicians always moves the story forward so assign
points based on how fast it will make the story end. If the ritual is going to
affect cards on the table or discard threats then make them cost more points,
if they are mostly for flavor assign them a lower number of points. Rituals
always require more than one person, so a low number of points should be
around 10 (if the ritual is mostly for flavor and does not affect any cards) to
20 (if the ritual will affect one or more cards in the game).

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OPTIONAL RULES

Spells with Twists

Coming up with your own spells in the game can be a lot of fun. Some
ways to make spells a bit more interesting or give them a unique flavor is to
make it so that the spell changes depending on how many points you spend
on casting the spell:

Peltiers Oracle of Ages

Used to observe, see and listen, to people from afar. Depending on how

many points are spent in casting the spell, the spell behaves differently (in
effect making each point level a different spell).

1: Scrying Portal (allows the magician to create a scrying mirror from


a physical or energy interface such as a candle flame, pool of water,
crystal ball, etc.)

2: Open the Inner Eye- Allows the Magician to scry without the use of
an external interface

3: Guiding Star- A creature is conjured (such as a will-o-wisp) and


guides the caster to whatever they seek.

4: Reflections of the Shadows of the Past: The Magician casting the


spell gets the information they seek via accurate visions of the past.

5: It happened before and will do so once more- The Magician casting


the spell gets the information they seek via accurate visions of the future.
A random element can be added to the spell for some unpredictable

and interesting results:

Healing of Garvock the Water Dragon

When casting a coin is flipped before speaking the words to cast the spell.

If the casting is successful and the coin lands on tails then the target is healed
as a normal healing spell, if heads then the number of points used to heal the
target is divided between all targets in the immediate area (at least one wound

185

OPTIONAL RULES

is healed for each person); if the spell is unsuccessful and the coin lands on
tails then the spell inflicts wounds instead of healing them, if the coin lands
on heads then the damage is divvied up between all those in the immediate
area (at least one wound is inflicted on each person).

Adding In the Random

One way to make threats less devastating or a good way to add a dice
element in play is to add a hit range for threats when they attack and, should
you so choose, for players when casting a spell. Roll a six sided die to determine
if a character is hit by an incoming, non-magical attack to make things more
random. When writing down a threat on a threat card, you can add misses
on a 1 or misses on a 1, 2 or 3, etc. This is also a good way to add the ability
to fail for players that have a high competence level in the target language.

Limiting Yourself

The Prodigy and Apprentice Systems of magic allow for some pretty
powerful spells to be cast if the players are creative enough. I find this
extremely fun and it helps gets players into trouble quickly but another
option to consider is limiting the amount of Drama Points able to be spent
by players according to either time spent playing (every few sessions bump
it up perhaps) or the characters in-game school year. First years can spend
one point, second years two points, etc.
If all the players are fine with merging the three systems together simply
state that the Prodigy System can only be used for one or two point spells,
Apprentice System for three or four point spells and five point spells require
using the Master System. This way, players can fall back on some tried and
true spells while also venturing into more difficult levels of casting as well.
Another really great and fun way of limiting yourselves is by setting up a
class schedulefill out a class time table based on professors in the Book of
NPCs (downloadable from magiciansrpg.com) and what classes they teach
or brainstorm and write down on your own what classes your protagonist is

186

OPTIONAL RULES

taking. You protagonist can only cast spells that fall into the subject matter
covered for those classes or classes previously taken in campaign play.
Spells can also be made more exotic and interesting through the use of
component materials like holy water or a particular metal being necessary
to cast them or other conditions such as time of day or year, position of the
planets or stars, etc.
On the other hand, your group may want to remove as many restrictions
as possiblemaking it possible to cast spells with as many points as a caster
is able (not just five) as well as making it so that a caster is only limited by his
creativity is a great way to encourage language learning in a game.

Pace and SingleSession Games


If playing a one-shot or a game at a convention, the group may decide
that it wants to forego some of the game elements that require a slower pace.
Letting players go for broke on each scene and the ability to try and get as many
Drama Points as possible instead of making them build up their relationships
and taking smaller payouts on Drama Points that eventually lead up to larger,
five-point scenes, may be more appropriate when there is not enough time
to do so. This can change the mood of the game to more of a slapstick style
where characters try to earn as many Drama Points as possible each time
though so it is something to consider first. Players may want to have at least
one or two scenes with conflict characters and the like to at least build up
some tension and background before going for scenes with larger payouts
but it will ultimately be up to a groups play style.
Also, players may want to play with fewer limits on magic as well as more
Drama Points from the very beginning. This allows for big spells to be cast
right off the bat, perhaps more creativity, and a faster pace to the resolution
of scenes.

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OPTIONAL RULES

Going Traditional
Gaming groups that wish to have a more traditional set-up can opt for
one person being the Negotiator for the entire game; everything works the
same except there would be no need for a Negotiator token and the Negotiator
would not have a protagonist to play, rather they would play any roles that need
defining and would be the arbiter every turn when assigning consequences
for failure. Essentially, that player would always take Casting Turns and never
Drama Turns as they would have no protagonist to earn points for.
When doing this, I still recommend that everyone go through the same
process of writing elements on their three cards with assigned point values
and then have them shuffled together and placed on the table as per usual.
The only thing that would work differently is the Negotiator would always
be the same, always take Casting Turns by drawing a card, adding to the
narrative and negotiating consequences for failure for players on all turns.
Another option, particularly for single-session or con games is for the
Negotiator to either prepare their own cards in advance or, for all the cards to
simply be handed over to the Negotiator. The Negotiator will then incorporate
those elements on the card into each scene by drawing a card on each casting
turn. This way point values can be assigned by the Negotiator on the fly as
needed depending on pace and what elements are working well in the story
and it keeps it simple for first time players.
The Negotiator may not even assign point values to the cards as long as
they have an idea of what conditions and number of wounds a threat can
inflict and once the element on the card has had its time in the sun and the
Negotiator wants to move on he can simply discard the card.

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OPTIONAL RULES

More Points

Depending on the mood you want for your game, you may wish to allow
other ways of acquiring points. In order to create a sense of group cohesion
or heroism, whenever a player does something particularly heroic or selfless
some points may be added to a communal point pool in the center of the
table to be used by anyone who needs them. You could also play a game with
five points set aside for each player each game session that can be thrown
into the pot whenever a player does something particularly cool like casting
a particularly creative spell, pulling off a really difficult sentence, narrate a
scene particularly well or just enhances the overall enjoyment of the game
in some way. Adding rules for when and how a player earns Drama Points
can drastically change the tone and mood of a game.

Adding Advancement

The core idea behind Magicians is tying advancement to educationas


you learn and gain mastery over different parts of the language, your character
will also be able to cast different kinds of spells, grow in power and look cool
doing so. When using the Prodigy or Apprentice magic rules there is no extra
advancement beyond learning the language and building up your vocabulary.
However, the Master System has titles associated with different grammar
patterns. As you gain mastery over the types of magic you might give yourself
and your character bonuses to casting spells or other cool abilities. Here are
some ideas you could do as added bonuses for advancement:

Magicians who master three types of magic have learned to control


themselves and their emotions better and so do not have to either have
a breakdown or cast a spell immediately when reaching five points, but
six instead.

Magicians who master five types of magic may cast spells that cost
only one drama point at no cost (but must still speak them properly in
order to cast them).

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OPTIONAL RULES

Magicians who master seven types of magic automatically gain one


first tier ward for free each day, in order to invoke a second tier ward they
need only recite first tier ward tongue twisters and in order to invoke
third tier wards they need only recite second tier tongue twisters.

Magicians who master ten types of magic reduce the cost of casting
all spells by one drama point. (This does not mean you somehow acquire
Drama Points when casting one-point spells).

Fast Fights

There are times when you may want a fight to progress faster, a card to
be resolved quicker or play in general to speed up. An easy way to make this
happen is to play out more rounds in a fight, allowing for an additional turn.
Additional turns allow plot cards to be resolved much more quickly and are
a good way to finish up a game session or to end a scene when you have a
great idea to resolve the card. A group may wish to play this way for some or
all fights but it is best left to the Negotiator to decide since they are the one
to frame and continue the scene. A Negotiator might opt to continue a fight
or have the threat to continue to play a part in the narrative by finishing a
casting turn as per usual (after each player has had one turn to cast a spell.)

Graduated Failure
While consequences for failure always make it so that failure is interesting,
there will be many times when you fail to cast a spell because of a single
mistake. Since messing up the noun in a spell or even a single character will
happen often, you can add that partial success into the negotiation part of
failure before speaking the spell aloud to cast it. An optional rule is to say
that whenever a partial success occurs, a concession is made so that the caster
achieves his intent but the Negotiator still gets to throw a wrench in the plan

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OPTIONAL RULES

as a result of that successful spell casting. So a successful casting means you


achieve your intent, a failure means the consequence for failure happens, but
a partial success means that you achieve your intent but the Negotiator gets
a but at the end of your success.
Taking the idea a step further, one could easily fit the partial success
system from Apocalypse World, particularly the Dungeon World style of play
when dealing with partial successes. For example, whenever a partial success
occurs, the Negotiator may choose one of the following things to happen in
addition to the character achieving their intent:

Introduce a new threat or danger that can be resolved with one Drama
Point.

Introduce an unexpected location.

Give the character unwelcome information.

Hint at a threat or a plot element to come.

Deal one wound of damage.

Put the character in a position that can only be resolved by casting


spells and spending Drama Points.

Offer an opportunity that requires the expenditure of Drama Points.

Use their success against them.

Separate the character from the rest of the group.

Give them a hard choice to make.


Example: Richard wants to get through a magically locked door in the

library in order to find the source of a strange light coming from beneath
the door. Richards intent is to find out where the light is coming from by
opening the door, the Negotiator tells him that, if he fails, his unlock spell
will unlock every magically sealed door on the floor. Richard casts his spell
by saying using the noun for power and the verb for remove but messes up
the character for power. The Negotiator says:

The door glows for a second but then you see the knocker on the door
begin to change into the face of the head librarian, it looks like the face
is getting ready to call out the alarm! (introduce a new danger that can

191

OPTIONAL RULES

be resolved with one Drama Point.)


The door glows for a second and then you hear a click as the door
gently swings inward but as you peer inside you see a sunny, tropical
beach with the sun blazing in the sky. (introduce an unexpected location.)

The door glows and you hear a satisfying click as the lock disengages
but just as youre about to take a look inside you get the distinct impression
of someone watching you. (Give the character unwelcome information.)

The door glows for a second and unlocks but just as youre about to
step inside your gaze is drawn to the floor where there looks to be claw
or scratch marks of some kind, despite the floor being made of stone in
this particular room. (Hint at a threat to come.)

The door glows but then a needle shoots out of the lock into your thigh.
You feel woozy but the door clicks open. Take one wound. (Deal a wound
of damage)

The door glows and clicks open but suddenly the ground beneath you
begins destabilize, the stone floor appears to have turned to something
like quicksand. (Put a character in a position that requires more Drama
Points being used.)

The door glows and clicks open but upon entering the room something
glinting in the moonlight catches your eyes. The light from the window
is causing something shiny to glint up in the rafter above you. (Offer an
opportunity that requires the expenditure of Drama Points).

The door glows and clicks open but as the door swings open you see
a tall, dark figure with a bright light emanating from their staff, as the
door opens the figure turns toward you. (Use their success against them).

The door glows and clicks open but as you step through the door
suddenly slams shut behind you, leaving the rest of the cast of characters
on the other side of the door. (Separate the characters)

The door glows and swings open but as you step forward the door
begins to glow and a wave of power knocks you off your feet. The door
starts to close almost immediately and when you were knocked down
your wand went skidding in the opposite direction. (Give them a hard
choice to make.)

192

OPTIONAL RULES

Nouns and Verbs


F

or an English to Korea dictionary, visit: http://dic.naver.com/ On that


site, type the word youd like to translate in the first box on the left.

Nouns:

Accident

Back

Action 

Bird

Advantage

Boat, pear, stomach

Age

Body

Agony, torture 

Book

Breath

Airplane

Alcohol

Animal
Answer
Apartment
Apple 

Building

Bus

Candle

Arm
Art

193

NOUNS AND VERBS

Car

Chair

Characteristic, feature

Child

Cigarettes

Feeling (senses)

City

Feelings (emotion)

Classroom

Fight

Clothing
Color

Fire

Condition/state of being

Fish

Conflict

Flower

Contents

Friend

Food

Foot

Conversation
Computer
Dark

Forest

Death

Fruit

Furniture

Difficulty

Direction

Disease, bottle 

Future

Garbage

Distance

Glass

Doctor

Goal

Dog

Grade

Door

Gun

Dream

Grandfather

Ear

Grandmother

Earth, the ground

Gravity

Education

Hand

Effort

Head, hair

Employee

Health

Height

Help

Here

Energy/power/strength 
Environment
Eye

194

Finger(s)

Exercise

History

Expectation

Heart/mind

Experience

Homework, assignment

Face

House

Facial expression

Influence, effect

Family

Information

Father

()

Interest

NOUNS AND VERBS

Image

King

Object, thing 

Language

Opinion

Leg(s), bridge 

Opportunity

Letter

Person

Life, existence 

Pain

Light

Paper

Line

Part

Living thing

Past

Love

Peace

Machine, gadget

Personality

Makeup

Phone 

Material

Picture (art), (camera)

Man

Place

Plan

Plant

Me
Meaning

Medicine

Price, value 

Meat

Problem

Memory

Product, goods

Method/way/strategy 

Professor

Middle

Promise

Minute

Question

Moment

Rain

Money

Reality

Month, moon

Reason

Religion

Relation, connection

Mood, atmosphere
Mother

195

Nose

()

Mountain

Relationship

Mouth

Research

Music

Restaurant

Name

Result /conclusion

Nature

Rice, food, a meal

Newspaper

Road

Night

Room

Noise

Shape

NOUNS AND VERBS

Seat, place

University

School

Us

Science

Wall

Secret

War

Shoulder(s)

Water

Side

Weather

Situation

Weight

Skin

What

Sky

Which

Star

Where

()

Smell

Why

Soldier

Wind

Song

Wisdom

Soul

Woman

Speed

Words (the spoken word, language)

Store

/Horse

Story

Work, situation/day

Student 

Taste

Worry

Writing

You

Teacher

Tear(s)

Vegetables

Temperature

Violence

Test 

Voice

That (thing) 

()

(over) There

Thing (object)
This (thing) 

196

()

Thought

Time

Today

Toe(s)

Tomorrow

Tree, wood

Trip

Understanding

NOUNS AND VERBS

To acquire, get, gain


To answer, respond

Verbs

/
/

To appear

To arrive

To ask

To attach, stick

To avoid, dodge

To be (to exist)

To be bad
To be beautiful
To be big

/
/
/

To be bright

To be cheap

To be clear, pure

To be close

To be cold

To be complicated
To be correct, accurate

/
/, /

To be crazy

To be dark

To be different

To be difficult, hard /, / (physically taxing)


To be drunk

To (be) dry 

To be easy
To be expensive

To be far

To be fast

To be good

To be happy

To be hard

To be heavy
To be high, tall

197

NOUNS AND VERBS

/
/

To be hot
To be interesting

To be in pain, hurt

To be kind

To be lacking
To be light
To be important 
To be many
To be serious, grave
To be sad

/
/
/
/
/
/

To be similar

To be simple

To be slow
To be soft
To be strange
To be strong

/
/
/
/

To be new

To be not

To be obvious, clear
To be old

/
/

To be ok, fine

To be possible

To be scary

To be thankful

/, /

To be the same

To be unable

To be weak

To be young

To become

To believe

To block

To buy
To call (someone)
To change
To (double) check (something)

198

NOUNS AND VERBS

/
/
/, /
/

To choose
To chop, slice

To clean

To climb, to rise

To close

To come

To come down

To come out 

To continue

To cry

To cut

To deceive, trick

To decide

To demand

To depart

To die
To disappear
To discard, to throw away
To do

/
/, /
/
/

To draw

To drink

To eat

To end, finish

To endeavor 

To enter, to go inside

To examine

To explode

To express

To fall, drop

To feel

To fight

To forget
To fly
To frighten, scare
To give

199

NOUNS AND VERBS

/
/
/
/

To go

To grasp, to grab
To guess

To happen

/
/

To hate, dislike

To have, carry, own

To help

To hit, strike

To hurt
To investigate, check out 

To know

To laugh

To learn

/
/

To like
To listen

To live

/
/

To look

To lose (something)

To love

To make
To make a mistake

To misunderstand

To move

/ (ones body), / (an object)

To need

To not know

To not need

/
/

To occur
To open

/, /

To order, command
To pass

/ (movement), / (time)

To pick (out)

To place, set down

To play, have fun

To prepare, get ready


To protect, guard

200

NOUNS AND VERBS

,
/, /

To pull
To push

To read

To realize, to come to be known


To receive
To research
To restrain oneself
To rise, to get up

/
/
/
/
/

To save, rescue

To search (for)

To sell

To send

To shake

To sleep

To solve, resolve

To speak, to say

To split (up), divide


To stack (up), pile up
To start
To stand
To stop, halt
To tear, rip

/
/
/
/
/
,

To teach

To think

To throw

To turn, spin

To try
To understand
To use

/, /
/
/, /

To wait

To walk

To want (something)
To watch, gaze

201

/
/

To win

To work

NOUNS AND VERBS

Thanks

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Kyle Frazier

Brandon Doxtater

Kashmir Maleki

Kim Stalbovs

Greg Roy

Patty Kirsch

Andy Zeiner

T. Oakerson

David

Thanks

HEA D P R EF EC T
Judd M. Goswick
Peddro Ribeiro
Tolcace

Andy Kitkowski

Laura Hamilton

Oren Geshuri

Ben McKenzie

Kristi McConnell

Rachael McCormick

Tiarna-Shea Maslin

Stephanie Romm

Brandon Nazario

Jerome Anderson

Serah Min

Redapple

Kevin Schantz

Florian

Mark P Grace

Anne Wiesner

Cameron Watchorn

Robert Silva

Matthew Edwards

Randy Nelson

Kyle MacKay

Edward Boudreaux

Benedict Layng

Ana The Littlest


Shinobi Silva

Edward Saxton

Lars Gawronsky

Peter Ward

Venn Sable

Morgan Pelham

Joseph Simons

Joseph Hokum

Anthony Runeslinger Boyd

Sara Kinney

Achim Oppelt

Stevie P.

Andrew Balderrama

Guillaume Nocker

Justin Colledge

Brendan Rein

Chad DIGJAM Moulder

Ken Finlayson

Michelle Ho

Drew (Andrew) South

Markku Tuovinen

Michael Stephens

Dodplas

Jean-Marc Comeau

Kathy Daniels

David Wild (U2mad)

Noam Rosen

Erik Lagerstedt

DamnedEyez

Hvard Krugerud

Zachary Brown

BSLB Davis

Daniel Gonzalez da
Costa Campos

Alexander Cheth

Chris Fazio
Jeremy Flare Scherer
Fraser Simons
Gabriela Guevara
Adam blinks Blinkinsop
Mike Norris
Morgan Weeks
M. Tobolla
Stras Acimovic
Dean Barclay
David Morgans
Eljas
Sandra Wegner

210

P R O D I GY
Brad Dancer

Matthew McFarland
& Michelle LyonsMcFarlandPlay
Attention Games, Inc.

Thanks

Conan Brasher
Nancy Calvert-Warren

Bourcy Mark

AP P RENTI C E
Patrick Burden

M AG U S
Andreas Jakob

Vincent Ecuyer

Anna Aleta P. Oandasan

MASTE R
Marco Andre Urbach
Mezzasalma

Brianna Vincent

Kevin Kaz

Nick Roberts

Paolo Ramello

Billy Wellen

Raven Daegmorgan

Andrew Lloyd

Paoc Garcia Jaen

Emmett Cooper

David M. Johnson

Gary Younger

Dr. Juris L Purins

Jennifer Fuss

Wei Seong Quah

Shigeji Suyama

Adam W Roy

H E A D MASTE R
9th Level Games

Andrea Sokal

Brido

Ronald Steeves

Sren Kohlmeyer

A Hindley

Oliver Peltier

Travis Prow

Patrick Joynt

Andrew Garvock

Silvio Herrera Gea

Stephen Slaby

Luke McCampbell

Jason Thai

Matt and Cat Williams

Mark Hotson

Rice Honeywell

Flavio Mortarino

Ryun Rhee

Andrew Gorman

Dimitar Mihaylov

Aaron Wong

Keith Preston

Edgardo A. Montes Rosa

Bryce Undy

Blake Baranowski

CABAL
Hsile Amune, Munashii

Nathan Johndro

Darcey Wunker

Derek Cardwell

Nathalie Hauzeur

Gary Thompson

Matthew Fleming

Adam Hurd

C R E ATO R
Lawrence Huang

Brian Anderson

SOR C ER ER
Edna Stafford
Nicholas Laune

Kryptovidicus
Mark W. H. Lambe
Rob Rowe

Eugene Kaplanis
Cody Tornow
Raul Salas; Reaper Media
Grant Edwards
Joseph Le May
Neal Kingsley
Jamie Lafond

Id also like to thank Paul H., Arnold Cassell, Jordan (CyroPulse), Craig
Hargraves, Justin (Masq), M. Tobolla, , Runeslinger, Emily (Genidoxian),
Anne (Nocturama), Andra (yirna), Cameron (Ikatono) and Mark Hotson
for their help editing Magicians and making it as good as it is.

211

Thanks

Name

True Name

Wounds

Trust

Conditions

+
-

Favorite Spells

Justice

Safety

Three Words that Describe Me are...


Im unhappy because...
Things would be better if...

Freedom

1
2
3
4
5
Love

I dont get along with _________ because...

Self-Worth