View Full Version : Anti magic thread

13-08-2006, 22:29
Hello, every few months or so (probably less) there seems to pop up an anti magic thread or, how much should magic affect the game thread, they generally arouse alot of feelings among people and last quite along time making tens of pages many people contradicting each other. For a start i would like to say, can we not give it abit of a rest on this subject? surely we have discussed everything about it we could, and some of these threads are quite heated (often ending in quite bad terms) aswell as the fact they expand way to fast for people to keep track of and for newcomers to get involved.

I don't want to be the party pooper and i don't want people to thing im acting like some kinda mod when i shouldn't, but it seems that this issue is equally divided, which suggests all it is is a matter of opinion and also that probably it should stay a similar level as it is now because your never going to satisfy everyone so you should meet where you are equal.

What i would like to say though is it tends to be the case that rather than people disliking magic they dislike the fact that they have to take a wizard, what i would stress is for them not to go all anti magic because of this, because i don't think its quite the same to be saying magic is evil ban it and i don't like magic because i have to take a wizard, what these people have to realise is that for every one of them who doesn't like taking a wizard there is someone who likes taking a wizard and that it is not a matter of the system being wrong (well it is kinda because there are simple fixes), but of their opinion. What i would also say to these people is would you feel the same if you were allowed more dispell items for non wizards which seems to me the simplist fix that pleases both camps (remembering that a wizard is alot more points than these items)and you could easily allow such a thing as house rules. Anyway what i am stressing here is don't get the mix up between oh i don't like using magic and magic is wrong because one is opinion one is fact and you cannot base an argument on opinion.

The main reason i started this post however is something i call gradual degredation, what we have seen over the past few editions 5-7 (can't comment on anything before the old mgic box set though that might of been 4th ed aswell), is more and more rules restricting magic use or making it possibly worse. As rules change public opinion changes to match, the current rules set becomes the norm level and you have people who expect higher or lower as they get more used to the rules. So for example crime rates are high, the government puts in laws and they lower, people get used to this level of crimes and their opinion of what is a high crime level and what is a low crime level changes to match and after awhile some people start to think theres alot of crime even though the goverment brought in these rules and lowered the crime level (so bassically these people thought 20-30 crimes a day was high, so the government lowered the levels to around 10-20 now the people are used to that crime level and so when the crime level is at the high end of that they think its too much). This is fine in itself it evolution, we should always strive for the best, the problem however comes in the subtly that this happens, nothing changes in an instant so you barely notice it. The problem comes in how the probles are fixed do the police sort out the social problems causing the crimes, or do they just add in more laws limiting people and slap more and more people in jail, we can see the latter happening in england the gradual degradation of freedoms and the expanding prison population, and the problem is no one notices it because its all in the name of fighting crime and terrorism they don't care how it will affect everyone just that we stop crime and terrorism. Similarly in magic do we limit everything continually as peoples opinions of too much magic becomes less and less, or do we sort it out so they can feel they don't have problems with magic but others can feel magic is doing what they want it to. I believe there are solutions to the magic problem without limiting it, since mainly the problems can be seen in the dispell system even if your argument isnt that you dont want to bring a wizard, a proper unbias reform of this system would i think solve the problems people have against magic. i think anything less than a solution that solves both sides of the argument would be unnacceptable no matter of their is a majority on either side, because afterall this is everyones game and i believe everyone can be satisfied.

Anyway sorry long rant, sorry about the political referances if they offend you, please don't berrate me about it because it was just an analogy and this thread is about magic so lets keep the discussion on that.

14-08-2006, 02:49
Two particular quotes that come to mind:

"A society that gets rid of all its troublemakers goes downhill."

"I never learned from a man who agreed with me."

I'm mostly in the make magic weaker camp, and I'm glad we have the most recent thread around, even if it's others pointing out how wrong I am. From reading the comments in the most recent, I've decided I've got to grudgingly accept that magic, in most cases probably isn't as bad as I'd make it out ot be, even if I'd like it weaker.

So, as I see it, we get rid of the threads and everyone quietly and privately disagrees with each other, or we have the threads, they get a bit rough, and each side has the opportunity to understand why the other side thinks the way it does.

And lastly, trying to make a forum more conservative is an exercise in futility. At worst you accomplish nothing, and at best you kill the forum by limiting the breadth of opinion.

Mad Makz
14-08-2006, 04:19
Magic is always going to be contentious because it's representation in the game background has always differred vastly from author to author and from edition to edition. The Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (WFRP) game was decidedly low magic, but the earlier editions of Warhammer Fantasy Batte (WFB) game was decidedly high magic. Much of the background novels etc were written more from the WFRP viewpoint as it was the more unique of the two settings (for high powered fantasy books people could look to Forgotten Realms or Dragonlance etc.) but a lot of the WFB game background focussed on the massive power of magic.

Magic has always been the first thing to get changed and to undergo the largest changes in every edition of Fantasy because of this seeming disparity. There is also the general concern that single models can have an unusually large sway on the battle coupled with the problem that magic in the background is fickle. Combining these two problems into a ruleset that is approaching balanced AND pleases anything like a majority of people has been incredibly troublesome for GW and not surprisingly so.

6th Edition with it's miscast table and dice pool and greatly more scaleable power levels of wizards went a long way to rectify this, and also bring all the varying descriptions of magic a little closer together. The new edition of WFRP has also gone a long way to bring the ideas of what magic is in the game world more closely aligned with WFB and has given I think a stronger indication of what level of power magic should have in the WFB game.

In general, magic is always going to be tricky to balance but I definitely think that refining what came out of 6th edition (especially the later spell lists of 6th edition, Ogres, Tomb Kings, Wood Elves, which all had different mechanics but seemed right power wise for their role in the respective armies) seems like the best direction to head.

The basic game rules may be in their 6th edition but really we are only 1 edition in with the current magic rules and they are so vastly superior to previous magic rules (which were literally 'tacked' on after the fact) that continuing to see them be refined throughout another edition is for me probably the most pleasing thing about 7th.