Mana

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Lines or streams of mana flow through everything in and on Elanthia, even through the planet itself. Spells manipulate these lines of mana away from their natural state to form spell patterns [1][2] but, without the intervention of very powerful magic, mana streams always return to their natural state when the spell is complete[3]. The body of every animate being naturally resists the manipulation of the mana lines passing through it, causing Magic Resistance. Mana is invisible and cannot normally be detected; different kinds of magic users are trained to "see" it differently depending on their respective disciplines. Once trained in the perception of one type of mana, a mage is blind to all other frequencies (though manipulation, albeit blindly, is still possible; see Magical theory). Spell energy as a product of other types of mana can still be detected, however. Mana is not portable, although the spell energy that results from manipulating mana can be held by the magic user or stored within Cambrinth

Mana perception

Many magical actions require you to harness mana using your attunement. The mana currently available to you varies, and may be perceived using the PERCEIVE command. Your accuracy in doing so is dependent on your Attunement skill; below 75 ranks, you may have less precision in distinguishing mana levels. The mana scale is as follows:[4]

Weak
(<25 ranks)
Developing
(25-50 ranks)
Improving
(50-75 ranks)
Normal
(>75 ranks)
dim faint faint faint
dim faint faint/hazy dim
dim faint/muted hazy hazy
dim/glowing muted hazy/flickering dull
glowing muted/glowing flickering muted
glowing glowing flickering/shimmering dusky
glowing/bright glowing/luminous shimmering pale
bright luminous shimmering/glowing flickering
bright luminous/bright glowing/lambent shimmering
bright bright lambent pulsating
bright bright lambent/shining glowing
bright bright shining lambent
bright bright shining/fulgent shining
bright bright fulgent luminous
bright bright fulgent/glaring radiant
bright bright glaring fulgent
bright bright glaring brilliant
bright bright glaring flaring
bright bright glaring glaring
bright bright glaring blazing
bright bright glaring blinding

Abilities that increase mana levels

Abilities that decrease mana levels


The mana spectrum

Mana is a spectrum of energies with different frequencies, which is "a metaphor to describe that higher mana resonates with increasingly ephemeral ('small and quick') forces while lower mana resonates with increasingly physical ('big and slow') forces"[5].

From highest to lowest:

ManaField.gif

Divinity and Gravity are considered the "basic building blocks of reality" and cannot be manipulated by mortals. Attempts to do so usually end with disastrous results.

Necromantic Mana is actually a non existent type of mana perceived solely by Necromancers after going through some sort of imperfect physiological process while trying to alter themselves to see three types at once[6]

The mana spectrum can be drawn in different ways, based on what you consider important at the time. The classic way of doing so is to start in the middle ground between Life Mana and Elemental Mana and split it. Holy Mana and Life Mana are conceptually ephemeral realms while Elemental Mana and Lunar Mana are conceptually physical realms. An equally valid way of looking at it is to think of it as a curve. Life Mana and Elemental Mana, at the bottom of the curve, are grouped together as the metaphysical concrete realms while Holy Mana and Lunar Mana, at the top of the curve on opposite ends are metaphysically abstract realms. The worst compatibility (in terms of Sorcery) occurs in the clusters of the first chart, trying to juggle two conceptually similar but metaphysically conflicting realms. Both Elementalists and Moon Mages deal with "the physical," but a Warrior Mage wants to change something's material structure and a Moon Mage wants to underwrite the meaning of its three-dimensional space and everything goes to pot. The best compatibility occurs in the cluster of the second chart, playing with an entirely new concept that is still grounded in the same cosmological "level" the caster is used to. A Moon Mage's background is better suited to dealing with the notions of ephemeral souls and extra-planar gods than he is furry critters and visceral magic. .

Room-based mana

For Holy, Life, Elemental and Arcane spell casters, available mana is mostly determined by the current room. Each room has a distinct mana level, bonused by your Attunement skill and by small cyclic factors unique to each mana type (see Theory, below)[7][8]. The bonus from Attunement represents mana from the adjacent area and is a skillset perk; Magic Primes see more mana faster than Magic Secondaries, who see it faster than Tertiaries. The mana scale grows faster at low levels of skill, but is weighted to take into account a character's full lifespan and mana boosters.

Holy mana

Holy mana results from the past, present and future presence of the Immortals[9]. Because it resonates with the gods themselves, Holy mana cannot be wielded without the assistance of a supernatural connection, which in both known cases is the guilds confound[10]. The purity of a Cleric's devotion or a Paladin's soul state allows them to tap into the latent Holy mana.[11]. With it's short wavelength, Holy mana cycles the more quickly than Life Mana, but more slowly than Elemental Mana or Lunar Mana. It increases steadily as the holy days of the Immortals approach, peaks, and then slowly drains away.[12][13]

To Clerics, Holy mana has a golden colour and ephemeral and becomes more substantial or "real" as their Devotion increases. Paladins perceive it as substantial all the time, but its appearance reflects their soul; the more corrupt and sinful the Paladin, the more they see diseased blotches appear within the streams of mana. Even those with a pristine soul continue to notice them.

Life mana

Life mana is the result of continuing struggle between order and chaos, the antithesis of entropy[14]. The Life mana bonus cycle involves the seasons, solstices and equinoxes. Life mana rises and falls with the seasons, generally around the solstices, and has the longest cycle of any mana type[15][16].

Empaths generally see Life Mana as something very light and airy, with bright colors that are pleasing to see. Rangers, on the other hand, perceive it in dark, earthy tones. Both guilds perceive it as having a regular ebb and flow like a heartbeat when in its natural state.

Note: Life mana is the only one that's ever slightly inaccurate on the external rooms, but in general not by very much. It's because the bonus for Life mana is calculated differently for the rest and it's hard to properly do it for each room, so we use the current room's bonus. [17]

Elemental mana

Elemental mana derives from the actions and reactions of the elements of Elanthia, as well as trickling in raw form from the Elemental Planes. Elemental mana best resonates with the physical reality rather than the abstract. The Elemental mana bonus cycle depends on weather. Elemental mana is empowered during inclement weather, such as rainstorms and hurricanes[18]. Warrior Mages who enjoy Fire spells are encouraged to indulge in pyromania indoors.

Bards perceive Elemental mana aurally rather than visually, with the tempo and complexity of the music increasing with mana levels. Warrior Mages perceive Elemental mana as an amalgam of elemental traits, at once fiery and slow to move away from its natural state as well as liable to jerk out of a magician's mental hold. In both cases it is described as a wild, mindless, and primal force that is difficult to manipulate.

Other types of mana

Lunar mana

Lunar mana derives from large kinetic forces at work; interactions between heavenly bodies -- moons, planets and the sun[19]. Unlike other mana types, lunar mana is constant throughout Elanthia and varies with time alone.

The mana provided by the sun is relatively constant and provides a slow but steady mana growth as the magicians skill advances. It is far from the most dominant source of Lunar mana and, in fact, is not even perceivable by novice mages.

The most dominant, and easiest to perceive, source of mana is the three moons themselves. The mana provided by a moon varies with the phase of the moon, its position above or below the horizon and its distance from Elanthia. Special lunar events between moons such as conjunctions, oppositions, and eclipses also increase the overall level of lunar mana. Each moon also has a stronger effect for specific types of spells providing a variability in mana levels across the spellbooks.

Moon Mage Spellbooks

  • Perception is strongly influenced by Yavash, weakly by Katamba, and not at all by Xibar.
  • Psychic Projection is strongly influenced by Xibar, weakly by Yavash, and not at all by Katamba.
  • Moonlight Manipulation is strongly influenced by Katamba, weakly by Xibar, and not at all by Yavash.
  • Enlightened Geometry is equally influenced by all three, effectively acting as an average mana level.[20] This average is used for generic magic actions such as charging cambrinth, harnessing mana, and casting Analogous Patterns spells.
  • Stellar Magic spells no longer have their own explicit mana level, but instead use the mana type of the spellbook that is most closely related to the stellar spell.
  • Teleologic Sorcery uses a blend of Perception, Psychic Projection, and the appropriate local Elemental or Holy mana level, which means it is most strongly influenced by your location and Yavash, followed by Xibar and then Katamba. Note that Moon Mages can only sense the portion provided by the moons, so the mana levels for this spellbook will appear to be a much smaller amount than the others.

Trader Spellbooks

The planets provide a percentage bonus to moon and solar mana, depending on how far within a magician's perceivable range the planet is. There are four ranges based on Attunement skill: barely within, within, well within, deep within. This bonus is cumulative, increasing with each planet you can perceive. The size and mass of the planet do not matter. The planets do have orbits, however, and may move into or out of your range as they move closer to or farther away from Elanthia.[22][23]

Finally, The lunar mana bonus cycle depends on weather and time of day. Lunar mana is more easily perceived on clear days and at night, and as such has the shortest bonus cycle of any mana type.[24]

Moon mages perceive their mana as cold and white like starlight. The opposite of holy mana in many ways, lunar mana always seems very "real" and has a sense of weight and gravity to it. It moves in great tides across the entire planet, causing individual streams to appear almost static. Occasionally, it is observed to form runes, symbols, and other expressions of meaning within the nominally random flux of its tide.

Necromantic mana

Often incorrectly referred to as Arcane Mana[25], Necromantic Mana is a freakish amalgamation of Elemental, Life and Lunar Mana that doesn't really exist. It is an illusion perceived by Necromancer resulting from barbaric modifications to their nervous system intended to allow them to "see" more than one type of mana.[26]. The primary sources of Necromantic mana are the Life and Elemental mana in the room. Lunar Mana provides a fluctuating bonus to Necromantic Mana[27]. 'Holy Mana affects the Necromantic mana value in a non-direct, confounding way which you're not meant to fully understand.[28]

Necromantic mana appears 'stained' and wholly unnatural, like veins of coagulated fat and grease that hang in the air like limp ropes. It is never observed moving naturally, but if left unattended the streams may be in a radically different configuration when later observed. The volume and intensity does not change with these shifts, only its appearance.


References

  1. Post:Introductory Magic Theory - 11/06/2014 - 12:23
  2. Post:Confounds, Necromancers and the value of sharing pt 1.1a - 12/12/2014 - 11:39 AM
  3. Post:Confounds, Necromancers and the value of sharing pt 1.1a - 12/12/2014 - 12:36
  4. Post:Test Instance: New PP Model (Overview) - 6/17/2009 - 15:50:50
  5. Post:Crosspost: Holy Mana Fluctuation - 5/14/2008 - 15:15:35
  6. Post:Questions about mixing mana types. - 11/10/2009 - 20:07:32
  7. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:05
  8. Post:Mana, Elanthia, and You - 8/10/2009 - 16:35:23
  9. Post:Mana Level Overrides - Player Participation, Pls - 7/14/2009 - 17:57:54
  10. Post:Why does Holy hurt so much? - 11/03/2010 - 12:25:08
  11. Post:Other school's spell scrolls - 1/21/2009 - 15:16:29
  12. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:19
  13. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:05
  14. Post:Mana Level Overrides - Player Participation, Pls - 7/14/2009 - 17:57:54
  15. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:19
  16. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:24
  17. Post:Strange observation - 8/13/2009 - 12:01:08
  18. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:19
  19. Post:Elanthian Mana - 10/09/2011 - 22:42
  20. Post:Teleologic & Stellar mana levels - 8/20/2014 - 12:12
  21. Post:Re:_Trader_Magic_Released_-_12/27/2017_-_06:02
  22. Post:Test Instance: New PP Model (Lunar) - 6/17/2009 - 15:52:15
  23. Post:PP planets - 7/21/2009 - 13:24:43
  24. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:19
  25. Post:Arcane Magic Philosophy - 7/12/2010 - 17:46:58
  26. Post:Questions about mixing mana types. - 11/10/2009 - 20:07:32
  27. Post:Stupid questions - 06/17/2012 - 11:19
  28. Post:Buggy ACS? - 1/8/2010 - 16:13:58

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