Sunday, March 16, 2008

Magic: Soulbonded Artifacts

Perhaps the most dramatic kind of enchanted object in Aarn, a soulbonded artifact can only be created by a divine caster. In order to create the artifact, the divine caster must know a certain kind of spell which is a genesis whose effect acts like a boon. The power of the spell is such that it can only be activated via ritual. The ritual itself is costly, and so is learning the genesis, but the effect is arguably worth it.

One of the prime material components for the ritual is a non-magical object that will become the soulbonded artifact. This object can be any kind of tool, weapon, armor or even machine. The larger and more expensive it is, the more the rest of the ritual will cost in both power points and other material components, which somewhat limits what can and cannot become a soulbonded artifact.

During the process of the ritual, the divine caster selects a sentient target; the target can be the divine caster him or herself, or someone else, but must be a willing participant of the ritual. Once the ritual is complete, the target will permanently have the physical object magically tied to his or her soul. This object will at first seem perfectly normal, but the target of the spell will always know where the object is.

Over time, the soulbonded artifact will become more and more magically powerful as the target of the spell puts his own experience points into leveling up the artifact. Like all boons, the magic of this artifact is extremely hard to dispell - a successful dispelling attempt will only briefly render the object magic-neutral. Like rubber however, it will recover over a period of a few hours to its previous magical strength, the bond disrupted but not actually broken.

Very powerful soulbonded artifacts can be magically dispersed and then recalled at will, can be summoned to the owner of the artifact regardless of the distance, or even allow the owner to spy on distant locations and "hear" what it hears, "see" what it sees.

Some channelers have a skill that is similar to this, but the artifacts they create are more temporary constructs made out of their own magical aura, instead of an artifact bonded to them artificially. Often the channelers need a physical object to act as a base before they can produce these effects, but the physical object isn't required at higher levels of power. More detail will be put into this channeling skill in a future post.

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