witch awakening experiment
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“How long would it take to reach to my cap? I mean I guess old age doesn’t matter if you can come back from the dead…”

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"If you spent 8 hours on study each day, it'd take around 134 years. Mimis don't age, you might die but not of senescence."

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“That’s a long time… but my cap is high right? I guess thats fine.” Who knows, she has no frame of reference for any of this. “Can I see the other stuff then?”

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"I'm older than that and it's not particularly remarkable."

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And yes, she can. There are things which will make her point capacity larger (except for this one, which will make it smaller but give her more points right away and the capacity to use other capacity-increasing things for current points instead), things which cost points and come in five tiers of which she can take up to 3, and other things which cost points.

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“Uhhhhh?” She is lost. Too much choice! Not enough info! “A little help? What am I looking at?”

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"Ranked magics and other magics! Ranked non-elementalism magics are discounted for a class and for three elemental affinities – except Witchery and Wands, those are discounted for all elemental affinities – and some of them are so discounted for you you'll actually gain points for taking them. Elemental magics are mostly locked to specific elemental affinities unless you're a sorceress, which you aren't. There are also factional magics, which you get a discount for if you commit to spending some time with the associated faction – but some of which you can take without joining, such as Wands. The other magics are often single things – be a hybrid, create simplistic invisible servants, see auras, that sort of thing, but some of them are more complicated, like my armor and weapons."

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“So if I did settle on Oread, and academic, what gains points?” Free points and free magic. Lets tentatively build this selection out. And maybe hybridise with mimi later on in selection if there’s points for it.

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"Alchemy, Runes, Witchery, Portals, Aethernautics, and Wands. Also, Prestidigitation – that's an unranked magic – is free for you. If any of them sound like horrible traps, you can instead increase your potential by barring yourself from them, but I don't hear that complaint from Academics much. Do you want a summary of what they do at rank 1?"

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“Uhhh sure! But free magic is free magic so.” Tentatively scoops them all up in the build.

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"Alchemy lets you brew potions that are Curatives, Stimulants, Novelties, and some other types you can't manage at rank 1. It'll take an hour, though. you can cut that down by half with your class bonus if you don't want to reduce ingredient use or brew two potions instead. You'll need a big cast-iron pot and a heat source and a spoon, and you'll really want an auto-stirrer. I have those around. You'll also need potion ingredients.

At rank 1, Curatives let you replicate a limited range of medications – nothing particularly addictive or restricted, but expectorants and toothpaste and sunscreen are all feasible. Stimulants will basically get you something coffee-like. Novelties can replicate a lot of cheap stuff – dyes, the effects of helium on voices, that sort of thing. You can also make inverses of these, though potions are distinctive to the witch who crafts them, so I wouldn't recommend inconveniencing your enemies this way. Useful if you want to be sleepier or remove hair dye, though.

In terms of ingredients, at rank 1 you can get what you need at the grocery store or substitute ten witch kisses – that's the amount of mana a witch full of mana and without a mint can crystallize in an hour. Components get more expensive as you go up in rank.

Runes let you enchant objects with runes. Runes last as long as the object they're on, take about four times the ingredients that potions of the same rank do, and require rituals that are exponentially increasing in time to cast. At rank 1 that's just a minute, though. They tend to stay active for about 12 hours after activation, and can be reactivated.

You'll have access to Helák, Füsil, Motdet, Kalvÿr, and Vælbán to start – that's Luck, Fertility, Courage, Chill, and Augment. All of these can be inverted. Helák doubles the odds of positive or negative coincidences, respectively. Füsil increases the odds of contraception and healthy magical offspring, and has multiple inversions. One causes risk of miscarriage and unhealthy offspring, but the more popular usage these days is just a reliable contraceptive without side effects. Motdet reduces fear and helps clarify thought, and inverted increases panic. Kalvÿr chills objects to around water's freezing point while preventing phase changes, but oddly enough when inverted it still makes things cold, just less comfortably and conveniently. Vælbán grants 10% resistance or vulnerability to a particular elemental type of damage.

Hexes has a rank-zero effect you get for free, which is crystallizing mana into witch kisses, usable as currency and ingredients.

Witchery also has a rank-zero! Your great-great-etcetera grandma, who is also mine and a lot of other witches', decided to give us all a garment, a hat, and a rod. The garment is one-piece, the hat has a wide brim, the rod makes magic easier, and every time you summon them they're in decent shape. At rank one, you can summon and dismiss them instantly, though summoning your garment replaces all your clothes and your hat will also replace other hats. You can turn your rod into a flying broomstick and fly yourself plus cargo or someone light at around 30 kilometers per hour. You can also meditate to redesign this stuff, in case you think that your outfit really needs a nice floral print.

Familiarity has a rank-zero effect you can use for free, but you might want to think before using it, because you can't get a different familiar after picking one. You get a companion animal, loyal to you and fairly smart for an animal, you can dismiss and resummon it if it gets hurt or dies, and it can interact with spirits.

Necromancy has another rank zero, but it just causes you to see ghosts and spirits.

Portals has a rank zero, which causes you to see mildly hidden existing portals and use them. At rank one, you can actually make them. Portals take the form of Portkeys, Gateways, and Rifts. Portkeys jump between locations and users can follow them along. Gateways are built at arches and door frames and activate when triggered. Rifts are just wounds in space, quick to cut but very sharp-edged. You'll need about $15 per mile of reagents for portkeys and gateways. Rank 1 rifts are going to be around 15 centimeters, with one end about 2 meters away from you and the other up to 90 meters if you can see it or 18 meters if it's just very familiar. You can only have 1 portkey or gateway at a time, you can't make any to somewhere you haven't been, and there's an 80-kilometer limit.

Divination has a rank zero, which is telepathic messaging with people you've met, though they can reject communications.

Aethernautics is not particularly impressive at rank 1, but it's not terrible? If you see a cosmic body, you can intuitively recognize its true name, position in the sky, and disttance from you, and you get a bit better with spatial geometry and distances.

Wands at rank 1 lets you use your rod to shed light like a torch, create a small static visual illusion, a slap-like pulse of force, push or pull something at a bit of a distance, emulate a weak dagger thrust, use your rod as a marker, improve someone's jump height, or interfere with weak spells. However, you can only use one of these once a day.

Prestidigitation is a solid bag of tricks. Adjust the flavor and smell and temperature of food and drinks within edible range, make poorly-crafted small objects that turn to dust after about a minute, create small flat illusions while you focus on them, or clean or dirty around 28 liters of space."

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“Free magic AND bonus points? Why not just have them as standard, feels like you might miss out of you didn’t know.” Her counterfactual awakening where she dies didn't have half the magics she just got for free. And she still has 7 whole points to spend even if she decides to do hybrid. 

With prestidigitation they can feel like a real d&d wizard! Seriously who is giving hasbro all the deets on real magic to put in their games.

”What kind of stuff isn’t free? And if theres 5 ranks for each kind of ranked magic… yeah I guess having such a high cap makes sense. Gonna take a while to afford stuff.”

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"Witches actually do default to having all the rank zero magics, and most witches can pick up the major ranked magics later. And a lot of stuff isn't free. Turning mud to stone with Hexes 1, telekinesing rocks and being half as vulnerable to blunt force trauma with Earthmoving 1, demon-summoning and curses and necromancy and improving your familiar bond, getting a sorcery you don't have an affinity for, advancing in the arts that start free for you, and there's a very open recent faction – less than a century old – whose factional magic, Digicasting, would let you enter fictional worlds while dreaming. Or you could get it cheaper if you wanted to join them, of course, faction magics are easier to get as a faction member."

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“Wait what? You can enter fictional worlds??? Like it’s not all random dream logic but like actually being there?” She has never wanted anything more in her entire life. And then on a second parse through of the idea, she has a horrifying existential crisis about what if the fictional people are real and feel things and how the warhammer 40k fictional setting exists and the newr infinite suffering that would cause. “Wait are they real?… do the people in them exist? Is every fictional world real?”

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"You can enter them, but I wouldn't say they're particularly real? Think of it more like a structured dream, drawing on the collective understanding of a work of media and weighted towards the authors."

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Relieved sigh. “Oh, okay, so I don’t have to worry about the fictional people in dark settings.” Existential crisis averted.

”Then I DEFINITELY want that magic cheaper, as long as I don’t have to do anything terrible to get it.”

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"Nothing terrible, you just need to go to Arcadia, the faction in question. Very lenient school, no tuition, free food and housing, they don't have classes in everything every year but they cover all the major forms of witch magic and plausibly at least something else you're interested in."

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“Whats the catch? Free tuition? Free food? Socialist hogwarts that teaches you how to play dream videogames sounds kinda too good to be true.” Magic school to learn dream magic, and it’s free? Seems like a pretty final decision for her build.

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"The professors are pretty much all volunteers and so it's hard to impose positive obligations on them. They might decide they don't feel like grading the exams they assigned, you might show up to class and find out your teacher is out watching a movie, and if you complain you might get a hug from a friend but nobody's going to reprimand the professor. It's not as secure as Hawthorne, and I'm not sure if it'll last as long, either. And they're lax enough that it's not terribly difficult for a witch to unintentionally spend all her time at Arcadia reading novels and not learning any magic."

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