Friday, 28 April 2017

Wulfwald RPG Magic Systems: 4 - Ælfcynn Gealdor Sangere

Ælfcynn Spell Singing

The Gealdor Sangere, or spell singer, chants and sings to both gain and use his magic. Each song takes one combat round (or a minute if out of combat) to sing and the magic takes effect in the next round. The exception is the Glamour which starts to work as soon as the victim hear it. Obviously the Spell Singer needs to be able to sing to work his magic. If anything impedes his ability to sing, he is effectively powerless. For a spell singer to have their tongue cut out is tantamount to a death sentence. At their disposal Spell Singers have three forms of magic: Shapeshifting, Songs of the Forest, and the power of the Glamour.


To learn the secrets of Shapeshifting Spell Singers use their songs to coax an animal to come to them and teach them its secrets. Once they have done this they may take the animal’s shape. Whilst in this animal form the Spell Singer has all the attributes of the animal he shifted to, but retains his own intellect, memories, etc. Real animals can sense the unnatural nature of a Shapeshifter and react in fear to them. So, although a Spell Singer in the form of a field mouse need not fear cats, the cat’s fear of him may betray his true nature.

At each level a Spell Singer can select one animal form he can Shapeshift to, plus one additional animal form per level for any Charisma bonuses. It takes one round of singing for a Spell Singer to Shapeshift into animal form, other than that there is no cost or other requirements.

At Level 1 they may Shapeshift into either a field mouse, hare, salmon, or sparrow for one hour. However many animal forms they know they may only shift once per day.

At Level 2 they may select another animal form from level 1 or choose from either an otter, fox, or raven and hold their shape for 2 hours. However many animal forms they know they may only shift twice per day.

At Level 3 they may select either another animal form from level 1 and 2 or choose from either a wolf, stag, seal or eagle and can hold their animal form for three hours. However many animal forms they know they may only shift three times per day.

Songs of the Forest

Spell Singers learn the songs of the forest in a similar manner to the way they learn different animal forms, by singing to the forest and coaxing its secrets from it. In game terms these powers work best in a forest or wood, but at the Referee’s discretion some of them may work if there is any nearby tree, or even other vegetation.

At each level the Spell Singer learns one Forest Song, plus one for each point of Charisma bonus. Each song can be sung only once per day. However the forest is fickle and the Spell Singer has no choice over the song the forest teaches him. Instead, the Referee rolls 1d10 to find out what spell he learns. If the Referee rolls the same spell twice then the Spell Singer may sing that Forest song twice per day instead of once or choose to have the Referee roll once more.

1: Song of Memories
2: Whisper of the Woods
 3: Forest of Fear
4: Wall of Wood
5: Walk the Woods
6: The Hanging Tree
7: Wood Whip
8: Cloak of Leaves
 9: Forest Guard
10: Trial of the Tree

Song of Memories: The Spell Singer whispers a message to the trees which they will remember and whisper it back to whoever the Spell Singer asked them to.
Whisper of the Woods: Listening to the rustle of the trees the forest tells the Spell Singer all that has happened within the forest over the last few days.
Forest of Fear: Anyone who fails their ST must flee from the forest. The fear only abates when they are clear of the forest.
Wall of the Wood: The forest forms an impenetrable wall of branches, impassable unless fire, axe, or magic are used, even then it will take one hour per level of the Spell Singer to clear and risks angering any spirits of the wood.
Walk the Woods: The trees part to make previously impassable woodland clear.
The Hanging Tree: Vines or branches from a nearby tree snake down and fasten around the neck of one enemy per level of the Spell Singer and yank them up into the tree. If they aren’t released within 3 rounds and they fail their ST they die. If they make their ST they merely blackout and the tree lets them go.
Wood Whip: The Spell Singer calls on the trees and their branches grow into whips that attack his enemies doing 1d6-1 at 1st level, 1d6 at 2nd and 1d6+1 at third, and attacking one enemy per level each round.
Cloak of Leaves: The forest hides the Spell Singer and one other person per level, making them virtually invisible.
Forest Guard: At the bidding of the Spell Singer the tree grabs and holds one of his enemies until he bids the tree release the prisoner.
Trial of the Tree: The Spell Singer subjects his enemy to a trial of the forest. If the victim fails a ST the roots of the tree drag the victim underground and hold him there for as many years as he missed the ST by. The forest keeps them alive until they are released. Their Con is also permanently reduced by the number of years they were held for. If this reduces their Con to zero they die upon release.


An Elven Spell Singer uses the power of Glamour to manipulate people. In this case rather than singing, to use Glamour, the Elf whispers a rhythmic chant that their victim finds strangely compelling. To successfully Glamour someone the Spell Singer’s player must roll under their character’s Charisma + level on D20+/- targets Wisdom bonus.
If unsuccessful the spell singer can’t attempt to Glamour that same person for 1d3 days.
A successful Glamour can make the victim believe, see, or remember something that isn’t true, not really there, or never really happened.

For example a Glamour could make someone you just met believe you were their best friend, or make you appear to them as their best friend, or implant a false memory of a lifelong friendship between the two of you. More dramatically, a glamour could also make them believe they could jump from a cliff and survive, see a dragon, remember killing the king. The only limit to what a successful glamour can make an NPC believe, see, or remember is that of the player’s imagination.

There is a limit to how many people can be held under a glamour at once, but not a limit to how many different people the spell singer can attempt to glamour each day. There is also a limit on how long a glamour lasts, but a spell singer may end a glamour whenever they wish.

At 1st level a Spell Singer can Glamour one person for one, plus their Charisma bonus, hours.

At 2nd level they can Glamour two people at once for one hour or one person for one, plus their Charisma bonus, days.

At 3rd level they can Glamour a number of people equal to three plus their Charisma bonus for a day, or one person for their Charisma bonus plus three weeks.

Once the effects of a Glamour wear off the victim is allowed a ST with their Intelligence modifier as a bonus. If they make it, they remember what was done to them. If they fail they have no knowledge of being manipulated.

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