Friday, November 6, 2015

Holmes Rules: The Witch

[just continuing where I left off...but, man, I've been waiting a while to do this particular post]

Witches -- most magic-users tend to be concerned with things beyond the natural world: the celestial bodies, the astral sea, the planes from which magical power seeps into the mortal realm. Those magic-users who instead choose to focus their studies on the natural, earthy realm of existence may become witches.

A magic-user (male or female) must have a minimum wisdom of 11 to become a witch. They acquire and use spells in the same fashion as magic-users, but they may choose their spells from both the magic-user and cleric spell lists (including reversible clerical spells, if a witch is of non-good alignment). The number of spells a witch can cast in a single day is the same as a cleric of the same level (meaning the witch may cast no spells at 1st level); however, the spells are treated in all ways as those of a magic-user.

Unlike regular magic-users, witches do not scribe spell scrolls. Instead, witches may brew magic potions of any spells known (i.e. "in their spell book"). The cost and time needed to brew a potion is the exact same as the expense a normal magic-user faces when writing a scroll, but additional "special ingredients" might be needed for especially potent potions. Witches may engage in normal spell research like any other magic-user.

Witches are masters of natural lore and healing and can minister to a wounded character after battle, restoring D6-1 hit points. Once tended in this way, a character cannot benefit from additional ministrations until they've had a chance to heal through magic or normal rest.

"Double, double toil and burn and cauldron bubble!"

[some additional notes: the limitation of using the clerical "spells usable by level" table means that witches will be unable to cast the highest levels of magic-user spells (5th level if using Meepo's Holmes Companion, or 6th level for most other basic systems). This is by design. Also note there are no special "coven" rules here (just as there are no rules for apprentices or tower building given in Homes); for a basic level game, this is a good enough start and is a good enough emulation of the "solitary practitioner" I wrote about earlier. Higher level play needs to look at the specifics of the campaign setting for such things]

[oh, yeah...and this is my 13th witch related post. I consider that a good omen]


  1. Replies
    1. @ Tim:

      Thanks, man. As the RPG blog-o-sphere's resident expert on witches, your approval means a lot.
      : )

    2. Holmes is always a good place to start when doing anything in my mind.

    3. @ Timothy:

      I'm starting to think it's the ONLY place to start.