D&D 3.0: Tales from Mystara
Mysteries of Magic
Prestige Classes of the Mysteries of Magic of Mystara Étira
[GM NOTE: Even when the creation of the MoM is still a work in process, the Crafts, NPC’s and events related to them in Our Story are still valid.]
The most interesting features of the great school of Magic are the secrecy crafts. These are arcane philosophies of magic-use that have led to the creation of new magic. The general public is not aware of this factions, but any student curious enough to ask questions and observe people at the school can discover the secret orders’ existence.
These seven original philosophies include: Alchemy, Dracology, Elementalism, Illusionism, Necromancy, Cryptomancy, and Witchcraft, but more have been discovered (or rediscovered). These orders are active solely within the school; there goal is to influence key people into supporting there cause, and generate gold, either from there disciples or there allies. The gold is then spent to further the order’s magical research, the greater the chance of unveiling new awesome abilities and thus gain even more influence. Also, the high masters of each order hope to use there influence to become the grand master of the school.
Each secret order is divided into five circles controlled by a High Master. The High Master’s identity is unknown to all, except disciples of the Fourth Circle within there orders. Upon finishing studies at each circle, a follower gain special magical abilities. All of them are natural abilities of the disciple, not related to the normal spell-casting limits. Each ability can be used a number of times per day (as shown in the chart bellow), with variable chances of success. Except for alchemists, they are all magical abilities that can be dispelled. Unlike spells, they do not need to be memorized every day to be used.
To enter a secret order, a PC most first find a disciple who will sponsor her. Students or masters never openly admit to being disciples of one order or another. Newcomers in an order are usually not welcome because they represent another source of competition for the rank of High Master. The PC has to convince the disciple to sponsor him. Charm, corruption, deceit, blackmail, and bribery are all legitimate ways to further a PC’s ambitions, but subtlety is a must. Brute intimidation or violence will get the PC in serious trouble with the order. A “convince” disciple then informs his order of the PC’s wish to become a follower; if they think he may bring new knowledge to further there cause, they will accept him. Upon entering the order, the PC must swear loyalty (revealing the craft to outsiders will get the PC expelled from the order and probably hunted by city thugs).
Once a disciple, the PC is marked with an invisible symbol to prove her identity to other disciples. Once a month, the brethren gather to plan their activities in the school. The PC the begins to study the new abilities. In private instruction, higher-level disciples teach her the craft in exchange for gold (that will be spent for research). The price and length of studies vary depending on which circle the PC reached (as described bellow).
Explanation of terms
Circle: A disciple’s rank among her order, or the power rank of an ability (similar to “experience level”).
Cycle: The time needed (in days) to study one ability of a circle. At the end of a cycle, the PC gains the studied ability. A student may freely interrupt her studies, come back later and peak up where he left. To learn an ability, he must roll under her intelligence (on d20) all start all over again for this ability, if he fails the roll.
Cost: The fee in gold ducats for each day of studies. The gold is paid to the teacher, each day, or in advance for the full cycle.
Experience: The experience points a student must earn before being capable of using a new ability with the best chances of success (see Success bellow). He must earn the indicated Xps, using her newly acquired ability, before starting a new study cycle. When done the Xps are lost and the PC may resume normal level advancement.
Level: This is the minimum level at which a disciple may start studying abilities of each circle. Elven levels are treated differently: every time a “per level” ability modifier is mentioned throughout this chapter, add two levels per attack rank beyond C to the elf’s level (see Companion Book Two, page 30, for more detail on Attack Ranks). This bonus does apply here as well.
Success: This indicates the percentage chance a disciple has of using an ability. The higher the ability, the lower the chances he will succeed. If he has not accumulated the needed Experience yet, her chances are halved. For example: 60 + 1/lvl means 60% chances plus 1% per level. A level 15 wizard would have a (60 + 15) = 75 per-sent chance (half that, rounded down, if he has not yet gained the required experience points).
- of Uses: This defines the number of times within a specific period that a disciple can attempt to use the ability. A failed attempt counts as one attempt.
All abilities of a circle must be learned before advancing to the next circle. A 4th Circle student must find the way to reach the 5th Circle by herself. Costs and cycles on the chart are guidelines for personal research. Once he has reached the last circle, the high master will challenge his rival to a duel. The 5th Circle ability is gained only after the High Master is defeated. High Masters do not necessarily reside at the school. They are likely to be be found in their own towers. Their true identities are given in the “Marauders, Mages and Masters” section.
The duel is strictly between the PC and the High Master. They may travel great distances in order to find a deserted area for the challenge to occur. The looser of the duel may die (if the winner is chaotic), or surrender. If the PC loses, he retains her abilities, but must leave the order (revealing the order’s secrets is still a major crime). If the High Master is defeated, he loses her 5th Circle ability. The nature of this ability is such that the winner of the duel gains this ability. The high Master will not lose her ability, if the challenger has not successfully accomplished the last cycle of studies. Upon losing her ability, the High Master (if still alive) permanently retires from the order.
Note: Each craft is given on one page for player convenience. Feel free to photocopy the material for the players’ personal use.
Alchemists, The Master of Alchemy
The Catalysts, Master of Magic
Conjurers, The Master of Creation
Corridor Masters, The Master of Transportation
Cryptomancers, The Master of the Runes
Disease Masters, The Master of Plagues
Diviners, The Masters of Time
The Enforcers Controller of Magic
Flame Elementalists, The Master of Fire Element
Greed Masters, The Master of Curses
Healers, The Master of the Body
Illusionists, The Master of Illusions
Moon Dracologists, The Master of Chaotic Dragons
Necromancers, The Master of Necromancy
Spiritist, The Master of the Spirit
Star Dracologists, The Master of Neutral Dragons
Stone Elementalists, The Master of Earth Element
Sun Dracologists, The Master of Lawful Dragons
Technologists, The Master of Machines
War Masters, The Master of Battle
Wave Elementalists, The Master of Water Element
Wind Elementalists, The Master of Air Element
Witches, The Mistress of Witchcraft