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Author Topic: Firebolt, Fire School, Level 4  (Read 2808 times)
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Fox
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« on: 30 April 2008, 17:39:20 »

Fire Spells, Firebolt (Level IV)
 
Firebolt is another version of Fireball, using an alternative casting procedure that conjures faster, more agile, but smaller fire projectiles. While they need to be guided directly to the target and are not as powerful in a single blast as Fireball, Firebolts are still a very useful weapon for battlemagi who need a near-instant projectile.

Spell Effect.
Firebolt creates a ball of fire about the maximum effective size of the mage's fist. Larger is also possible, but at such sizes it becomes practically impossible to move forwards at worthwhile speeds. This ball is created extremely fast even for the low level practitioner, making it a useful combat spell even for the early mage.

The trick behind the spell is its method of creation. While Fireball takes time to build a large ball through circulation of energies over and over again (similar to how spinning around in circles while holding a large object will build up the amount of force it will have when you throw it), Firebolt gathers energy at a single point, igniting it, then thrusting it straight out, using Sphere II to guide and hurl the projectile to its target. As such, it is also more accurate than Fireball, which is merely released in the direction of the target with little further control from the caster.

Unfortunately, the manual directing of the ball which makes it more accurate and is central to its movement is also its undoing and the reason why the spell is not as widely useful as Fireball. Against other magi the spell may be easily countered and dissolved before it reaches its target.

Casting Procedure.
The mage must concentrate on a location in air nearby. Usually, this location is near the mage’s hand though this is not necessary. Then, the mage gathers stray Fire ounía he can find from the nearby air, and uses Sphere II to gather them immediately to the focus location. As the ounía gather, they ignite into a flaming sphere. The caster then uses Sphere II to hurl and guide the bolt to his ultimate target.

If his concentration is broken, the spell will likely dissipate, though the chances for a catastrophic fizzle are much lower than with Fireball and the results of such much less dangerous. However, concentration is still used during the flight of the bolt, unlike Fireball, so the mage can be potentially disrupted at any point up to actually impacting his target.

Magical Formula.
Not defined yet. 

Focus/Target.
The focus is initially a point in the air nearby, usually next to an outstretched hand to help the mage visualize the location, though not necessary. Once the Firebolt is generated, the mage then switches to the target location and guides the bolt to it.

Reagents.
A reagent commonly used to aid the spell are Burning Stones—sometimes in creative ways as the mage throws the stone to the ground to ignite it then building on its ignition and hurling the bolt created.

Spell Class.
Sphere II, Pyrokinesis (Physical Representation of the Fire School).
 
Range.
Due to the difficulty in manipulating ounía far away from the caster, the spell should usually be generated fairly close to the caster and then thrown outwards. The range of the hurled projectile is limited, however, and generally will not hold together beyond a few peds, around 10 peds max for a fairly experienced mage.

Casting Time.

Even at the lowest level, Firebolt takes only a few blinks to cast. It takes much longer for the bolt to travel to its target than it does to form at the caster’s location.

Duration.
Firebolt lasts until it impacts with its target, and thus its lifespan is rarely longer than a minute, or even half-minute. While it can be held in reserve for some time and then released at a later time, it is generally pointless to do so due to the speed it takes to simply conjure up another one.

Counter Measures/Enhancing Measures.
Opposing Fire Magi can often dissipate the spell even as it is being created by taking firm hold of the ounía himself, or sometimes even take control of the spell and turn it back on its opponent. Due to the fragility of the bolt, however, such battles for control will usually result in the dissipation of the projectile rather than a successful turnaround.

The environment can also strengthen or weaken this spell. Greater heat in the air will help the bolt remain ignited, while, due to the thin layer of concentration holding the Firebolt together, excessively strong winds or cold environments could make it harder for the caster to keep the ball focused, and it may be blown apart or dissipate if the caster's concentrate wanes.
« Last Edit: 12 May 2008, 00:39:29 by Artimidor Federkiel » Logged
Silfer Darkflare
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« Reply #1 on: 01 May 2008, 07:15:03 »

Gah, I seem to have returned. I cannot resist the call of spells. :P

Could windy weather/conjured wind make this spell less useful? If the firebolt is not so concentrated as a fireball, wind may blow it apart? (physical wind)
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« Reply #2 on: 01 May 2008, 08:26:27 »

Good idea, I'll add that.
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Mina
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« Reply #3 on: 09 May 2008, 22:24:59 »

Quote
Firebolt creates a ball of fire about the maximum size of the mage's fist, and no larger.

Why not?  The technique doesn't really limit the size, does it?  It might take a bit more time to gather the larger amount of ounia needed, but then speed isn't always necessary.  

Quote
Firebolt gathers energy at a single point, igniting it, then thrusting it straight out, using Sphere II to guide and hurl the projectile to its target. As such, it is also more accurate than Fireball, which is merely released in the direction of the target with little further control from the caster.
Couldn't a firebolt be unguided too?  Or a fireball guided?  Then again, maybe these will be considered separate spells.  

Quote
Once an amount of ounía has been gathered, the mage ignites them by applying Sphere I to increase their influence of heat
I think simply gathering sufficient amounts of Fire ounia at a point will lead to a flame being created.  The idea is that the closer two ounia are to each other, the stronger the xeua link between them is likely to be, so moving ounia towards each other will tend to increase the strength of the xeua links between them.  

Physical fire is also more than just heat, I think.  It's all the physical properties of Fire being expessed.  

Quote
Greater heat in the air is particularly more useful.
Well, yes, but isn't this more of an enhancing measure instead?  

Quote
While Fireball takes time to build a large ball through circulation of energies over and over again (similar to how spinning around in circles while holding a large object will build up the amount of force it will have when you throw it
This is not really relevant to this entry, but why would centrifugal force (which I assume to be what is being described here) apply to ounia?  Or maybe Santharians think it applies universally?  
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« Reply #4 on: 09 May 2008, 22:56:56 »


Why not?  The technique doesn't really limit the size, does it?  It might take a bit more time to gather the larger amount of ounia needed, but then speed isn't always necessary.

It does. The amount of ounia you are trying to push in a single, cohesive unit is much, much more difficult the larger it gets. Unlike Fireball, which only builds it and then releases it with no further focus from the caster, this actually pushes the thing the whole way to the target. So the less ounia you work with, the easier it is to keep it condensed and moving.
 
Quote
Couldn't a firebolt be unguided too?  Or a fireball guided?  Then again, maybe these will be considered separate spells.

Firebolt can't be unguided, as stated in the spell, you are using Sphere II to keep it condensed. Sphere II effects begin to revert back to their original positions as soon as you stop concentrating. With Fireball, you generally don't have to worry because the size of the fireball makes it take much longer for a significant portion of the ounia to leave the ball, but with firebolt, the small amount you are working with means that it will break apart without active concentration to hold it together.

A Fireball cannot be guided, at least not in the same way. Firebolt is completely capable of guiding in that it is maneuverable enough to fly through doors and make 90+ degree turns. Fireball on the other hand, due to its mass, is much harder to manipulate to such agility, so while you could push it a little bit in a few directions, it'd be like attaching rockets to an asteroid--you can change its course slightly, but that's it. Firebolt however can be extremely maneuverable.   

Quote
I think simply gathering sufficient amounts of Fire ounia at a point will lead to a flame being created. The idea is that the closer two ounia are to each other, the stronger the xeua link between them is likely to be, so moving ounia towards each other will tend to increase the strength of the xeua links between them.

You can have strong Fire ounia links without having flame. This is something we've discussed regarding properties in the past. For instance, light is condensed, active Fire ounia that is only using the Light property rather than the Ignition one (I separate Heat and Ignition because something can be hot without being on Fire, though I may not have mentioned this in the entry). You need to actually 'flick the property switch' to get that flame, unless you have a natural means of igniting it (like a Burning Stone, or Wood, etc. But raw air is not flammable enough to catch on Fire just by having close-by active Fire ounia).


Quote
Well, yes, but isn't this more of an enhancing measure instead?

True, I can list it there.


Quote
This is not really relevant to this entry, but why would centrifugal force (which I assume to be what is being described here) apply to ounia?  Or maybe Santharians think it applies universally?
 

This principle was taken from Artimidor's Fireball entry, and I also applied it to the Spear of Frost update by the same principle. I consider centrifugal force to, yes, apply to ounia. That 'roundabout' potential energy is what gives Fireball the ability to be created to such large sizes yet still move at impressive speeds (as the build up is essentially moving around and around in a circle until part of the circle is broken, causing the Fireball to fly off at the speeds it was already spinning at).

Ounia are as much physical as anything else. All things are, in reality, just blobs of ounia with certain active links and properties. There's enough of a physical nature to ounia for centrifugal force to apply.
« Last Edit: 09 May 2008, 23:00:25 by Fox » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: 09 May 2008, 23:44:12 »

Quote
The amount of ounia you are trying to push in a single, cohesive unit is much, much more difficult the larger it gets.

Sounds reasonable.  But if you're not manually pushing it, then it won't matter so much, would it?  Just link it to Wind and you get a self-propelled mass of Fire ounia.  But that's another spell, I guess. 

Quote
the small amount you are working with means that it will break apart without active concentration to hold it together.
Well, I was thinking, if you use more ounia to make a larger firebolt (and sacrifice some casting speed), couldn't it hold together for a longer time without active intervention from the caster? 

Quote
Fireball on the other hand, due to its mass, is much harder to manipulate to such agility, so while you could push it a little bit in a few directions
That's more or less what I meant.  Not particularly great agility, but the ability to steer it, if necessary. 

Quote
You can have strong Fire ounia links without having flame.

True.  But flame is not a property if Fire.  Like I said, it's all the physical properties of Fire being expressed.  And generally, it's far more likely, if a mage is not actively directing it, that all properties will be expressed, not just one of them.  So if you're not specifically increasing only one property, you get a flame by default. 

Quote
Ounia are as much physical as anything else. All things are, in reality, just blobs of ounia with certain active links and properties. There's enough of a physical nature to ounia for centrifugal force to apply.
That makes sense.  Well, I actually think ounia are only physical as long as they are expressing physical properties, and cease to be physical once they stop doing that, but it still fits. 
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« Reply #6 on: 10 May 2008, 05:27:03 »

Well, I was thinking, if you use more ounia to make a larger firebolt (and sacrifice some casting speed), couldn't it hold together for a longer time without active intervention from the caster?

Possibly, but any larger with this casting method and you run into the problem that you simply won't be able to hurl it due to its size. Twice as big as your fist would probably take much more effort to 'throw' and be slower.
 
Quote
True.  But flame is not a property if Fire.  Like I said, it's all the physical properties of Fire being expressed.  And generally, it's far more likely, if a mage is not actively directing it, that all properties will be expressed, not just one of them.  So if you're not specifically increasing only one property, you get a flame by default.

True, if you have enough condensed only to spark a flame. I'm not sure if this would be enough for that, but it could. I was thinking that you only collect a medium amount, but then the ignition sparks it, causing it to get hotter and by default have more active links to the ounia around it, which brings those extra Fire ounia into the flame by nature without the caster having to manipulate them himself. Though, I suppose if the firebolt was 'hurled' those 'extras' would be the first to be lost in the flame-trail of it flying ahead.

Quote
That makes sense.  Well, I actually think ounia are only physical as long as they are expressing physical properties, and cease to be physical once they stop doing that, but it still fits.

I think most ounia express both physical and spiritual, even if only in minute quantities. The ounia in the air would be most likely physical, IMO.
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« Reply #7 on: 11 May 2008, 08:24:05 »

Changes made based on comments.
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Mina
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« Reply #8 on: 11 May 2008, 15:41:14 »

I think you should probably mention in the overview that the firebolt is guided. 

Quote
As the ounía gather, they ignite into a flaming sphere, then uses Sphere II to hurl and guide the bolt to his ultimate target.
Did you accidentally leave out a few words here?  The structure of the sentence seems odd. 

Quote
I think most ounia express both physical and spiritual, even if only in minute quantities.

That makes sense.  Though I think for most cases if it's only minimally physical or spiritual it could be treated as if it was not physical or spiritual without too much problem. 
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« Reply #9 on: 11 May 2008, 16:36:53 »

I think you should probably mention in the overview that the firebolt is guided. 

Did you accidentally leave out a few words here?  The structure of the sentence seems odd.

I've made those two changes.
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« Reply #10 on: 11 May 2008, 16:45:08 »

I didn't mean how agile it is, but that it is normally guided, unlike a standard fireball, which isn't. 
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« Reply #11 on: 11 May 2008, 16:57:22 »

I didn't mean how agile it is, but that it is normally guided, unlike a standard fireball, which isn't. 

I felt that agile implies that it is guided, but I've changed it to be more specific.
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