Visions of Aquelae: The Redstone Band
Ritual magic is a means to create a magical effect that can be done by anyone who is able to follow directions and has the necessary materials, space, and time. And one who is willing to repeat it if some small but vital step is missed. Ritual magics in one form or another are practiced by most of the races and some of the monster races across Aquelae – really, any creature could do ritual magic. Humans seem to have both a fondness and a knack for ritual magic. It is likely that any given member of a race has seen at least one ritual. Whether it is a dozen penitent faithful bestowing a blessing on a congregation, or a dozen lithe forms leaping around a fire in time to skin drums, the magic is there. There is some debate as to the effectiveness of some of the more subtle rituals (rituals for spring rains or mild winters, for example), but others there are little doubt of. While there is a college at Norovis devoted to ritual magics, rituals are found throughout Aquelae and beyond, scribed on tomes and tablets, scrolls and rock monoliths; cavern walls, roiling in the brains of creatures not of this world, and other places besides. Practitioners of ritual magic are usually referred to as mages, and are both feared and sought-after. Copies of rituals are likewise sought (some more than others), and fake, incorrect, and needlessly elaborate rituals are found in bazaars and on bookshelves throughout Aquelae. The only rituals assured to be correct and stripped of unneeded elaboration are those very few bearing the Seal of Norovis on their cover.
While anyone can perform ritual magic, some rituals require more skill than others, and some have greater or more varied effects if done with skill. The D&D 3.5 ed. equivalent skills are as follows:
- Craft(Ritual Magic)
- Knowledge(Arcana) – for most ritual magic elements, although Religion, The Planes, Nature, and even History might be quite useful, depending on the goal of the ritual
Some of the rituals that can be found are listed below, and any known costs, materials, effects, times, skill checks (as required) and special needs or notes.
- Ritual of protection
- One of the most common rituals found across Aquelae, this can be a vague or specific protection on a person, place, or thing. Effectiveness varies based on the specifics of the variant used.
- Ritual of protective warding
- A more powerful protection ritual, able to imbue multiple conditions and functions into the protected space. Always fixed to a permanent structure or area.
- Ritual of blessing
- The most common form of ritual magic practiced by Human priests of The Shining One. It duplicates the effects of a bless spell, and also might bestow minor benefits for those receiving it (aid against a disease, divine healing e.g. cure minor wounds). It has little effect for those not of the faith.
- Ritual of plant manipulation
- Allows the mage to manipulate the characteristics of plants. This can be as minor as a change of color or as drastic as mobility and limited sentience. The changes are permanent, and it is possible to pass them along, creating new strains. However, the changes are not always stable or conducive to their surroundings.
- Many and varied rituals / methods of divination exist, of greater or lesser detail and accuracy. All are considered ritual magics.
- Divination by Cleromancy: the throwing of the bones
- Details preparation of bones (carvings, rituals, etc), and how to use them to get a “Yea”, “Nea”, “Weal”, or “Woe” answer to a question.