Herbalism

This elemental Path allows a magician to brew natural ingredients into potions, salves, oils, incense, poultices, stews and powders with real potency. It requires the Herbalism Knowledge to perform and usually involves dozens of harvested materials — plants, mosses, grains, moulds, earth and sometimes bodily fluids or remains.

Herbalists believe the magic they work comes through an affinity with the innate power of living things. Most dispute the concept of "magic," arguing that all things have powerful properties (or inner spirits): essences which must be respected. Herbal magic is not simple enchantment — it is a relationship between the magician and the Earth.

Like the Enchantment and Fetishism Paths, Herbal Ways demand a certain investment of time, effort and material. Only the right ingredients will do. The basic system for herbal magics is the same as Fetishism, but the concoctions take longer to prepare. Each level of effect takes two to four days of harvesting, sorting, mixing and aging before results can be achieved. This time can be reduced by a well-stocked pantry or ready garden, but will almost never drop below one day per level.

Herbal concoctions are usually good for a single use and a single purpose, most usually to heal or in some other way aid the target of the brew or salve. Victims of the darker variety of Herbal Ways should be allowed to resist the effect by rolling their stamina (or willpower) against the herbalist's successes.

Because of the slow and subtle nature of herbal and brewing magics, their exact effects are best left to stories than to systems. Players and characters are encouraged to devise their own recipes (rituals), with the samples below as guidelines. The discovery of some new brew might be the subplot of a whole story as the herbalist seeks the perfect materials to concoct a love potion or experiments with the flora of some foreign land.

This level enables the herbalist to concoct poultices and brews which cure minor aches or rashes, induce or prevent sleep, alleviate symptoms of slight illnesses, preserve foods when they would otherwise spoil, and other minor effects that would hardly be considered magic.

Cost: None.

Dice Pool: Intelligence + Herbalism.

Action: Immediate - however the character is required to have spent the necessary amount of time locating and brewing the ingredients before the player rolls. The roll is made only once the time has been spent in-character, and the brew is completed.

Roll Results

Botch: The concoction is slightly less appealing than sludge, and should anyone be brave enough to attempt it, it will have no effect whatsoever on them.

Failure: The concoction is slightly less appealing than sludge, and should anyone be brave enough to attempt it, it will have no effect whatsoever on them.

Success: The success rating indicates the effectiveness of the concoction. A single success suggests a bitter batch that is only marginally effective, whilst three successes ends up with a quite tolerable concoction, the effects of which are just as intended.

Exceptional Success (4+): At this level of success the concoctions are an especially enticing bit of work with double potency and a pleasing form.

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