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Converting Colleges to Multipower

Copyright © 2001 by Robert J. Hall

Return to Fantasy HERO®

The following writeup demonstrates a method for converting a magic college into a multipower framework. The conversion introduces a new category of multipower slots known as a Min-Max Slot.

Min-Max Slots for Multipower Framework

In addition to the standard and fixed slots for a multipower framework, an additional type of slot can also be built that has a minimum point cost. This type of slot, known as a Min-Max slot, is used when a powerful ability is created that will have major effects even at the lowest allowed power setting. The point cost of these Min-Max slots is calculated using the following formula:

Cost of slot = (Character points of maximum / 5) -
(Character points of minimum / 10) +
(Character points of minimum active cost / 10)

Example: Stigel decides to add a powerful Blast of Shards ability to his multipower. This explosive power will allow up to a 10d6 Energy Blast against Physical Defense. To maintain the potency of this blast at all power settings, the minimum level is increased to a 6d6 Energy Blast. As the minimum active cost of an energy blast is 10, the total character point cost is: (50/5) - (30/10) + (10/10) = 8. Stigel will need at least 30 points in his reserve to use this power.

Example: College of Storm Mages Multipower

The College of Storm Mages has a variety of spells that can be used to sense and alter the local weather conditions. For this example, the list of Storm Mage spells will be converted into a multipower framework. The first step of the conversion is to identify the limitations that are common to all the spells. These limitations are normally listed in the description for the college.

The base limitations for the College of Storm Mages is listed below:

Common Limitations: Gestures (-1/4), Incantations (-1/4), Requires a Magic Skill Roll (-1/2), Concentrate: 1/2 DCV (-1/4), Extra Time: Full Phase (-1/2), Spells limited to half their active points when in a closed environment (-1/2), Character must have at least 30 points of spells from the Storm Mage college (-3/4).
Total Base Limitations: -3.

Next, each spell will need to be examined to determine whether it will be a fixed, min-max, or standard slot. After reviewing the list of spells, I decided that the fixed slots will include all of the basic spells, plus any enhanced sense, defensive, obscure, and movement spells in the college. Converting these spells to fixed slots will maintain the game balance of the college, and give a reasonable selection of spells with a minimum slot cost. The table below shows the result of converting the spells selected for fixed slots.

Table 1. Fixed slot spells
CostPoints Spell - Power and Modifiers

17 Detect Magic - Detect, +2 to PER roll, Costs END (-1/2).
18 Detect Weather Manipulation - Detect, Discriminatory, Costs END (-1/2)
120 Fog Call - 2" radius Darkness to Normal Sight
140 Predict Weather - Clairsentience w/ Precognition, Limited to 1 day (-1/4), Only to Determine Weather (-3/4)
120 Weather Vision - N-Ray Vision, Only to see in poor weather conditions (-1)
120 Wind Riding - 10" Flight (-1)
18 Wind Shield - 4 PD / 4 ED Force Field, Costs END (-1/2)

The powers for the following spells are close to their minimum levels for Active Cost, so there is no significant advantage in using Min-Max slots. Instead the maximum level of each spell is increased to allow for variation while casting, and the modified powers are then converted to multipower slots.

Table 2. Variable slot spells
CostPoints Spell - Power and Modifiers

479 Lightning Bolt - 2d6+1 RKA, Indirect (+1/4), No Range Modifier (+1/2), Armor Piercing (+1/2)
230 Lightning Flash - 4d6 Flash, Explosion (+1/2)
370 Rain Storm - 4d6 Suppression, Affects any Fire Powers (+2), One Hex Affect (+1/2)
236 Wind Control - 16 STR Telekinesis, Explosion (+1/2)
362 Thunder Clap - 5d6 Energy Blast, NND (+1), Explosion (+1/2)

Finally, the remaining spells are modified using the Min-Max multipower slot rule. These spells were intended to be powerful invocations, so the minimum power setting is set to a value that will preserve their significant effectiveness. As an example of the Min-Max slot cost, for the Weather Manipulation spell below the maximum character points of the power is 90; the minimum character points of the power is 60; and the character points of the minimum active cost is 10. Hence:

Min-Max slot cost = (90/5) - (60/10) + (10/10) = 18 - 6 + 1 = 13.

When the common limitations are applied, the slot cost for this spell becomes 3. Note that for some of the spells below an advantage is being varied, rather than allowing the actual power to be modified. The advantage being varied is listed in the spell powers and modifiers column in italics.

Table 3. Min-max slot spells
CostPoints Spell - Power and Modifiers

3 60/90 Weather Manipulation - Change Environment (Minimum 32 hex radius / Maximum 256 hex radius), Variable (+1)
1 79/94 The Great Wasting - 1d6 Major Transform (Normal Weather into Drought Conditions), Area Effect Radius (6km Minimum (+3+3/4) / 100km Maximum (+4+3/4)), Cumulative (+1/2), Gestures Throughout (-1/4*), Incantations Throughout (-1/4*), Concentrate: 0 DCV (-1/4*), Extra Time: One Day (-3*), Character must have at least 60 points of spells from the Storm Mage college (-1/4*)
3 115/153 The Great Storm - Telekinesis (Minimum 18 STR / Maximum 24 STR), Linked with 1d6 Visual Flash, Area Effect (+1), x256 Area (+2), 1/2 END (+1/4), Gestures Throughout (-1/4*), Incantations Throughout (-1/4*), Concentrate: 0 DCV (-1/4*), Extra Time: 5 Hours (-2-1/2*), Character must have at least 40 points of spells from the Storm Mage college (-1/4*).
* This bonus is an addition to the common limitations

That's all there is to it!