Special effects skills are special skills. They allow the character to create various extranormal effects, from magic to miracles to psychic powers. Each given special effect is called a discipline and each is considered separate from the others. Each discipline requires two skills: an action skill that is used to create effects and a effect skill that is used to determine the power, damage, duration, etc. of an effect. For example, the discipline of magic has Sorcery as its action skill and Willforce as an effect skill. Psionics has Psionics and Mental Strength, Spiritualism has Focus and Faith and so forth.
Character use Special Effects skills to create effects (often abbreviated “FX”). Each effect is learned separately, and characters with FX skills have lists of effects they can do. For example, a typical Aylish mage:
Sorcery +3, Willforce +2
Effects (spells): flaming weapon, detect corruption, light, mystic shield, invisibility
Or an Eidenos Optant:
Focus +4. Faith (Keta Kalles) +3
Effects (gifts of Lanala): see through mist, increase Toughness, simple spear, blossom spear
Or a Core Earth psychic:
Psionics +2, Mental Strength +4
Effects: read thoughts, telekinetic lift, precognitive visions, psychometry
Even a Nippon martial artist:
Kata +1, Ki +4
Effects: invisibility, walk without trace, cobra strike, hypnotize
The following are the different types of effects characters can create.
This causes non-living things to move, levitate or fly without altering their shape or form. A weight value equal to the Effect Skill can be moved at a rate of speed equal to the difference between the weight value and the effect skill (i.e., a maximum weight could only be moved slowly if at all, but small objects may move faster).
Attack (wound, slay)
The basic damaging effect. The attack uses some medium (be it magical fire, holy lightning or mental force) to do damage equal to the Effect Skill to the target. The attack may be resisted by Toughness, Mind or Confidence at the caster’s choosing or by an opposing effect skill (such as a miracle resisted by the enemy’s Faith or a spell resisted by Willforce).
Bind (request, geas)
With this effect the target creature is forced to obey some agreement. The agreement can only be about a single thing and there must be a definte point at which the agreement is completed. The effect is generally resisted by the subject’s Willpower. This effect is often used to command summoned creatures to perform a service.
Compel (induce, control)
The compel effect causes the subject to do something against his will or to feel a particular emotion. The effect must be something that the target is capable of doing. Obviously self-destructive commands give the subject +10 to their Willpower for resisting this effect. The subject is entitled to a Willpower roll for each interval on the Time Value Chart that passes while under this effect to see if they break free of the compulsion.
This effect causes people or things to be hidden from normal notice or sight. The difficulty of noticing the subject of this effect (even in plain sight) is equal to the Effect Skill.
This effect allows the user to create matter out of nothing. Only non-living matter may be created and each type of item or material is a unique effect. The user also cannot create anything with which she is not familiar and creating materials beyond the user’s axioms is an automatic four-case contradiction.
Delude (appear, seem)
Delude creates illusions or phantasms that fool the senses of the victim. Strangely garbed wizards appear as ordinary workmen, an ancient barrow appears to be a gentleman’s manor, etc. Each type of illusion is a seperate effect.
Dispel (dismiss, banish)
This effect is used to cancel another effect or send a summoned thing back to where it came from. The difficulty is equal to the Effect Skill of the other effect or the appropraite resistance value of the summoned creature. While dispel can affect all the abilities of a discipline equally (e.g. dispel magic), each type of summoned creature is considered a unique effect and some creatures may have conditions on their banishment (such as knowing the creature’s name or having the correct Faith skill).
Enhance (fortify, grow, intensify)
This effect increases or improves an existing ability. Compare the Effect Skill value to the value to be enhanced and read the results on the Power Push table. This is the amount by which the value is increased. This effect has numerous applications, from creating enchanted weapons and armor to heightening Strength or other abilities and skills. Special Effects Skill values cannot be Enhanced by this effect.
Forsee (divine, predict)
The forsee effect is a difficult one that allows the user some glimpse of the future through any number of methods from Tarot reading to psychic visions. The difficulty is based on how far into the future the user wishes to see and what information is desired. Information gained from this effect is always somewhat vague and open to interpretation.
This effect can heal wounds, cure disease, etc. For wounds, the Effect Value is compared to a difficulty of 15 and the results are read on the success chart. For each level of success, one wound is cured. A successful use also removes all Shock and KO conditions. For diseases, the difficulty is based on the type of disease. Such healing may only be used once per day on any given character.
Protect (shield, armor)
This ability provides protection for the subject in the form of mystic armor, a force field or similar effect. The user’s adds in the Effect Skill are treated as armor adds up to a maximum of the Effect Skill value.
Reveal (hear, see, show)
This effect allows the character to sense things that are hidden or distant. It is the effect used for clairaudience and clairvoyance (scrying spells). It is also used for telepathy and other effects that reveal information directly to the character. The difficulty of the effect is based on the distance value and the Resistance value of the target character (if any).
This allows the user to control and warp inanimate objects. A character could use it to direct a fire into a wall, raise a wall of earth or open a passage through a wall. The action does not change, create or give life to the affected material. The difficulty is generally based on the Toughness of the material.
Summon is used to draw spirits into the user’s presence. The effect only summons the spirit-it does not bind it or protect the summoner. Those require other effects. Summoning cannot draw in creatures present in the normal world. Thus, the user could not summon the Aylish ambassador, for example. Each type of summoning is unique and some spirits cannot be summoned without additional conditions.
Transform (alter, change)
This action changes the form of a living being. The change does not affect the victim’s personality. The subject’s abilities are logically affected by the transformation (a man turned into a mouse would not be very strong, for example). This is a very difficult effect; the Difficulty Value is equal to the subject’s Toughness or Willpower (whichever is higher) +10.
Transmute (purify, putrefy)
The companion of transform, this effect changes non-living matter, turning lead into gold or wood into steel. The general difficulty is based on the Toughness and weight value of the object.
Transport (move, travel, send)
This effect imparts movement to the subject creatures, either at a speed value equal to the Effect Value or instant teleportation of a distance equal to the Effect Value. Teleportation requires that the user be able to see or sense the destination or be very familiar with it (in which case the difficulty is increased by +3).
Ward (protect, bar)
Ward creates a barrier against a specific opponent or effect, such as a summoned creature or an enemy of the faith. The warded creature must exceed the Effect Value of the ward with an appropriate skill or ability roll (usually Willpower or Faith) in order to break through it.
Weaken (curse, sicken)
This effect is the opposite of Enhance (above). The result points of the effect are read through the Power Push table and subtracted from the target value.
These effects can be created by adding a Time Value to the difficulty of the effect.
Extra Time: Add the time value of the additional uninterrupted preparation time to the bonus number.
Extra Effort: Each point of Shock taken gives a +1 bonus to the Effect Skill total. Each Wound gives a +3 bonus.
Possibilities: A reality-rated character can of course spend a Possibility to enhance one of their special effects.