Vis Hunting

Faerie Stories has an abstract system for resolving vis hunts where no-one can be bothered running a story. Hunting for vis is a seasonal activity in which the hunters follow up local legends and rumours of magical happenings. Many of these are blind alleys, so hunting is time-consuming.

Vis Hunt total = Area Lore + Magic Lore + Magical Aid + Assistance - area penalty - time penalty + a stress die.

If searching for Divine vis, Dominion Lore can be substituted for Magic Lore.

Vis Yield = Vis Hunt Total / Scarcity (round down)

Magical Aid: add a bonus of the magnitude of the best relevant InVi spell known (and +1 if the spell is mastered), and the magnitude of the best relevant InVi effect in any enchanted device used. If no relevant formulaic spells are known, use the magnitude of InVi that can be cast without fatigue.

Assistance: add +1 for each of the following: if anyone in the party has a better Area Lore than the Magus, if anyone has a better Magic Lore (or Dominion Lore if searching for Divine vis), or if anyone has a relevant supernatural ability (e.g. Second Sight or Magic Sensitivity, or Sense Holy/Unholy if searching for Divine vis) for a maximum of +3. If the magus hunts alone, they must quiz the peasants themselves, and so suffer the social effects of their Gift as a penalty.

Area penalty: The area searched should be around the size of a county or small country. Too small and an area will lack vis; too large and the search will lack focus. The roll is penalised by -3 per step away from the optimum e.g. a village or Covenant -6, local area (e.g. "the forest around the Covenant") -3, small country (e.g. Brittany or Wales) or county 0, larger country (e.g. France or England) -3, larger area (e.g. Europe) -6. Moravia is county-sized. Adjacent areas (e.g. Bohemia) could be searched with different Area Lores.

Time Penalty: Vis hunting normally takes a full season. Spending less time results in a penalty: -5 for the loss of one month, -10 for the loss of two months, and -15 if only 2 - 4 weeks are spent hunting.

Vis Yield: depends on the scarcity of vis in the region. For each multiple of the scarcity, the hunters find one pawn of vis. Scarcity varies; a typical region has a scarcity of 5, a settled area might have 6 or 7, while a richer area may have 4. Really rich hunting grounds, such as inside a large uncharted regio could have a scarcity of 3 or even 2.

Moravia is a typical region with a scarcity of 5.

Types of vis found: the storyguide can decide, or it can be determined randomly (per pawn or together for the season, according to taste). The simple random system is to roll one die: odd = form, even = common form or technique according to the following table:

  1. Creo
  2. Intellego
  3. Muto
  4. Perdo
  5. Rego
  6. Common form (region specific), Animal
  7. Common form (region specific), Herbam
  8. Common form (region specific), Aquam
  9. Common form (region specific), Auram
  10. Common form (region specific), Terram

Looking for something specific: This imposes a penalty of -5 for a common form, or -10 otherwise (ouch)

Reliable sources: Optionally, a large find could be substituted with a smaller, repeating source. Divide the number of pawns found by 3 (round down) to determine annual yield (so, in Moravia, a 1 pawn a year vis source needs a roll of 15, and 2 pawns a year 30). Alternatively, these can be handled through a story.

Botches: botching your vis hunt probably means finding tainted vis, disturbing something unpleasant, or someone getting injured.

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