Tuesday, October 9, 2012

When is magic a lifestyle?

In Legend Quest, the main spell casters are the mages. The mages/wizards have six schools of magic: conjuring, druid, healing, illusion, necromancy and sorcery. Now the way I see it, sorcery, conjuring and illusion are just tools to getting a job done. Sorcerers are out there casting fireballs and such and wiping out vast numbers of people. OK, that’s not normal, but being a killer isn’t based on sorcery. Similarly, the conjurers and illusionists are using magic as a tool, though more indirectly than the sorcerers. That leaves the others. Most games see druidic magic as a religion. Well, most games see healing magic as religion as well. Although we don’t see either of them necessarily as a religion (it can be, but doesn’t have to be), I think either of these disciplines does inherently cause the user to think and live in a different manner. When you are actively controlling the magical forces of the world in order to heal injuries or assist nature, it changes you. For most, it would make them more reflective. Maybe this is a philosophy and less religion, but there has to be something there. Magic is no longer just a tool to get your job done. It is a force for good. On the other hand, those who use necromancy or use druidic magic to cause harm (“despoilers”) would also have it change them. You cannot alter the flow of magic in the world to tap into the power of death and divert death magic to create zombies or drain the life from a person without it changing who you are. Even the sorcerer is actually using the magic to create fire; he’s not directly using the magic around his target to deliberately pull the life out of him. Compared to the necromancer, the sorcerer is using magic indirectly as well. He may know the fire will kill his target, but he’s making fire, not making death. You get into the whole deliberate vs. intentional argument here. What’s the point? I think the point is that healers naturally have to be different from “normal” folk. They have to see the world differently. So do necromancers. They aren’t just creepy because they wear weird robes; they think in creepy ways and understand the universe in creepy ways. There will always be those whose lives are affected more by something else than by their magic, so not every necromancer is going to have the exact same personality, but there will be an underlying current of death running through the necromancer’s life and personality.

1 comment:

  1. Sorry, this post isn’t what I had hoped it would be. There is so much more here that I would like to get into, but then the post is going to be book length. This is partially due to my work on Mundanes and Magicals - a double Baker’s Dozen book about lifestyles in a fantasy era. No, not a period of time from Earth! A fantasy era. Probably coming in 2013.