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    There are various reasons for this. Some cults offer only a limited form of boost/lower. Or the player designed his hero in such a way that boost/lower does not fit the role. And finally, because in coordination with other magicians in the group, other spells are more important on his list.

    Boost/lower is undoubtedly one of the most versatile spells in the game, but it is not all-powerful. Sometimes you need the range of a prolonged blast, the protection of warding, the damage bonus of a smite or the possibility to open and close the locks in the emir’s palace with a simple gesture, and other spells are more effective when faced by many pointy objects. Players at my table always learned boost/lower at some point in the game, but when I think about it, only a few players have really and extensively used it.

    High Priest of Hoenir & Champion of Qedeshet


    Masse, do you have a player that has taken Boost/Lower Trait? If so, what cult is he part of? As Enno stated, the Game Master needs to buckle down on the sins of Miracle workers, as their backlash is not that severe. So it will help if you can let us know what specific religion you’re dealing with and we can look in to the specific sins that might come up.

    Invisibility has a lot of drawbacks as well that are mentioned on page 80 of the Player’s Guide.

    Note on Invisibility: Having invisibility Maintained
    all day and being able to act without being seen sounds
    tempting, but it is not without drawbacks.
    Your allies likely cannot see you, so they cannot target
    area-effect spells to avoid you. Likewise, Touch spells in
    combat are hard to place on you.
    Unless you stand still and touch your comrade or call
    out, spellcasters must make a Notice roll (at –4 or –6)
    to fi nd you fi rst. Enemies who see a spellcaster casting
    a Touch spell also know where you are, especially if the
    trappings cause a visible effect, like swathing you in light
    for an instant.
    Allies also have diffi culty treating wounds they cannot
    see, and so have either an additional –4 or –6 penalty on
    Healing rolls.


    Well- I did. It ran weekly (well, almost) for 18 months. They had about 25 xp.

    The three priests in that campaign were:

    The Unknowable One Priest: Boost/Lower Trait w/ Spell Finesse: Maintainable, Shapeshift, Ethereal
    Rigr Priest: Invisibility, Detect
    Maera Priest: Disciple of Maera, Dispel, Deflection, Boost/Lower Trait, Bolt

    The group had two lawyers and a mathematician, there weren’t a lot of behavior or optimization errors.


    Is this a typo Masse? A nearly weekly campaign for 18 months would mean about 70-75 sessions, and you only gave them 25 xp?

    Well- I did. It ran weekly (well, almost) for 18 months. They had about 25 xp.

    Life is not a dress rehearsal.


    Hmm, not very likely. Even with only a game every other week for 18 months and 2.5 xp/game, a hero will get to Legendary (18 x 2 x 2.5 = 90xp).

    For the discussion, the experience of a hero is irrelevant. So let’s leave it at the above 25xp (Seasoned).

    A few minor corrections at the very beginning: 😉
    Unknowable One: Shape Change, Boost/Lower Trait w/ Spell Finesse: No Maintenance, Etheralness/Corporealness
    Rigr: Detect, <unknown Novice power>, Invisibility
    Maera: Dispel (+2 due to Disciple), Deflection, Boost/Lower Trait, Bolt

    Let us also assume that each of the clerics has Smarts d6, Spirit d8 and Faith d8.

    High Priest of Hoenir & Champion of Qedeshet


    The HF PHB recommends that sins be strictly applied to priests.

    How often should the hero now be tempted?

    There is no exact information, but if you look at how often a faithful must sin until the Furies are released (see Matters of Faith), the mentioned numbers give a pratical timeframe.

    So lets tempt clerics at least twice per season with minor sins, twice per year with a major sin, and once per campaign with a mortal sin or a crisis of faith.
    The confessions and penitents that eventually follow should always be played out in spotlight adventures.

    High Priest of Hoenir & Champion of Qedeshet


    Typically, a cleric must give up 50% of his waking time to directly serving his god. A disciple is expected to serve his deity above everything else. As such, he must devote 75% of his waking hours to serving his deity. Devotees, lesser than clerics but no less religious, must give up 25%.
    In many cases the duties a cleric performs are incidental to any plot and occur during downtime. Most clerics can be assumed to participate in prayers and minor ceremonies as part of their daily routine—attention need only be paid to holy and high holy days, which carry a price if not honored correctly.

    Most faiths have holy days and/or high holy days—days important to the god when the clergy are expected to pay due homage at the expense of other activities.
    Failure to observe a holy day for any reason is considered a minor sin. On a high holy day missing the ceremonies for any reason is a major sin.

    Because the free Connections Edge to a cult come with the Order Hindrance, the GM has all the tools he needs to ensure clerics go on adventures beneficial to the cult, and thus the god. Ordering a cleric to undertake an adventure is not heavy-handed or “rail roading” the character into obeying the GM’s wishes—it is part of the price a cleric must pay for his gifts.
    Failure to comply and delay orders is usually a minor, if not a major sin. They often also bring about mundane punishments.

    High Priest of Hoenir & Champion of Qedeshet


    Yes- it’s correct, roughly. It was a combination of the players not wanting to advance very fast (1 XP per session), character death (a few), players missing sessions and player turnover.

    The priest of the Unknowable One had faith d12 at the end, Maera a d10 and Rigr d8.

    I’m curious to see what Sin thoughts come of this conversation, but 3 things occur to me (in context of boost/lower since that’s what this thread is about):
    1) A minor sin (-2 faith for a week) doesn’t impact maintained and out of combat spells as much as instant in combat spells due to the ability to reroll. A minor sin doesn’t have much impact on the use of boost/lower. Maybe a way to balance this somewhat is that each -1 to skill roll reduces the maximum # of maintained spells by 1, as well.
    2) Boost/Lower eliminates the need for the party to have access to rarely used skills.
    3) A priest has to deal with sins regardless of what spells are taken, so it doesn’t balance against boost/lower specifically. (The priest with boost/lower and the priest with lock/unlock have to deal with the same sin list.)


    1. This -2 sin modifier has an impact on ALL Faith rolls this week (casting, disruption etc).
    By making it harder to cast a miracle it already “reduces” the max. no. of maintained spells.
    Whether a miracle is instant or maintained has no effect on the next arcane skill roll, only the currently maintained powers do. As do situational modifiers, like fatigue and wounds.
    Any arcane skill roll might be re-rolled by spending a Benny.

    2. It is the purpose of Boost/Lower to make trait rolls (attributes and skills) easier or more difficult. And yes, it is particularly useful for unskilled rolls. However, it only changes one trait at a time within one or two die steps. But its castings stack.

    3. Boost/lower is nothing special, compared to the other powers. The sins balance all powers equally.

    Later more about tempting your clerics.

    High Priest of Hoenir & Champion of Qedeshet


    Hi, Enno:
    Yes, the -2 from minor sin has an impact, roll to roll. In practice, consider someone with d10 Faith and a minor sin trying to get 5 maintained spells working. The target number gets increasingly difficult (6,7,8,9,10) as more spells are maintained, which means for every 10 attempts (10 outcomes on the d10), a 1 result requires starting over, but 5 are successes (then 4, 3,2 and finally 1 succeeds), which means the chance to progress is 5/6*4/5*3/4*2/3*1/2= 1/6 for each 5 minutes minutes spent casting, or 30 minutes mean time to succeed. For someone without a minor sin, it’s 7/8, 6/7, 5/6, 4/5 and 3/4, or 3/8, or about 15 minutes. In practice, 15 extra minutes outside of combat isn’t much of a penalty- either way, after morning prayer, sin or no sin, 5 Boost Traits will be active.

    Compare that to the combat caster, who goes from 30% of casting attempts fail to 50% and so ends up losing 20% of their combat casting actions. I think, in practice, this is a more severe penalty because combat time is so much more valuable than non-combat time.

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