WATER SPELLS: SPEAR OF FROST (LEVEL V)

SPELL EFFECT - CASTING PROCEDURE - FORMULA - FOCUS/TARGET - REAGENTS
SPELL CLASS - RANGE - CASTING TIME - DURATION - COUNTER MEASURES

Spear of Frost is a step up from the lower level spell Frostbolt. Similar to other bolt spells such as its former variant and the Firebolt or Fireball spells, Spear of Frost manipulates the air around the caster to form a concentrated physical weapon. This weapon can then be hurled at a designated target for offensive purposes.

Spell Effect. Spear of Frost does exactly as its name implies - it forms a spear-like weapon of pure frost out of the air. Unlike similar bolt spells, Spear of Frost is not a ball of randomly moving energies that deals just elemental injury (heat, cold, etc.), but is designed to form more natural wounds through physical impalement of the target. As such, it is somewhat more difficult to cast than other bolt spells, as the basic Frostbolt must be manipulated into a specific physical shape. The size and appearance of this spear can vary from caster to caster and casting to casting. It is recommended that only high level magi attempt larger and more elaborate spears, as the longer the spell takes to form and the larger it gets, the more chance that it will fizzle. While not as chaotic and uncontrolled as Fireballs, there is also the chance that the spell can shatter with a break in concentration, throwing small shards of ice in every direction (including the caster’s).

Once the spear is properly formed and the mage desires to utilize it, it can be released with an intended direction in mind. After release, this direction can only be controlled, and only minutely, by high-level magi, so it is recommended to aim it with the target’s movement in mind (leading ahead of the target if they are running to the side, for instance). Upon impact, the spear will deal massive injury, impaling a target and even likely breaking through armour.

Following the impalement, the negative effects of the highly condensed frost is likely to ensure the target’s death, as the biting cold of the shard spreads into the body through the open wound.

Some magi use more imaginative methods of casting in order to disperse the spell over a larger area. Only high-level magi are likely to have a degree of control over the spell after it is released, but some have reported specifically triggering the spell to shatter once near its target area, causing it to rain smaller but still deadly ice shards upon a larger field of impact. Return to the top

Casting Procedure. Spear of Frost is a relatively complicated spell to cast, due to the circumstances involved in its formation. Using Sphere II techniques, the mage manipulates the stray water ounía in the surrounding air, condensing them into a single point and activating their coldness property. The mage must point his hand towards a focused point in the air, and then concentrate on building the spear. The water ounía will be drawn from the surrounding air to the point of focus, forming a highly condensed ball of frost. The ounía will travel back and forth between the area of tension between the mage’s hand and the focus point, picking up more stray water ounía along the way as the bolt builds. Through this process, links with other ounía are created naturally, allowing the construction of a physical structure to take place.

This is where the casting is normally complete for other bolt spells. Spear of Frost however takes this further, and the mage must then manipulate the water ounía that he has gathered to form a sharp, pointed spear. Obviously one is not expected to make a lifelike interpretation of a spear - a simple pointed icicle is enough for the common mage. The method in which this is done is by stretching the point of focus. Rather than build the bolt along a single condensed point, the mage instead causes it to form over a longer area. Once the spear's basic shape has been formed, the mage then activates and strengthens the coldness property in the water ounía, creating the spear's physical structure. This, thus, requires more time to cast, and more ounía acquired, than traditional bolt spells.

Once the mage feels that the spear is ready, or is unable to control the energies any longer, he must break the tension between his hand and the point of focus, thus releasing the spear towards an intended direction (similar to releasing one’s grip upon a drawn bowstring). At this point, the mage has no further effective control over the spear. Higher-level magi may be able to somewhat manipulate it after release and make minor course adjustments or to shard it prematurely (as mentioned above), but little beyond that. Return to the top

Magical Formula. Not defined yet. Return to the top

Focus/Target. The initial target for the spell is the
air directly in front of the caster, concentrating the water energies into a spear-like shape. Once the spear has been properly formed, it is released in the direction of a secondary target. Though lower level magi cannot physically guide the spear into their intended destination, higher level magi may be able to exert some control over the spear'S movement after release. Return to the top

Reagents. Covering one’s hands with water, crushed mil’no leaves, or holding aquamarine stones are recommended in aiding the mage in casting the spell. Ice shards are also a possible reagent, though it is hard to keep such things in that form on one’s person for very long. Ice shards are specifically a help in that they can form the 'base' for the spear, which is then simply expanded on by the mage. Return to the top

Spell Class. Sphere II, Tides (Physical Representation of the Water School). Return to the top

Range. It is recommended to cast the spell relatively close to the mage’s hands in order to more fully focus on the ounía that are being used. The spell has an effective range of some palmspans in front of the caster, but beyond that the amount of effort needed to form the spear becomes increasingly more difficult.

Once the spell is released, it quickly disperses, so the target should be a fair distance in front of the caster. Exceedingly long ranges will require much more effort on the caster’s part to keep the spear formed as it traverses through the air. Return to the top

Casting Time. Depending on the strength of the caster and the desired size and speed of the spear, casting time varies. Lower level magi will find it difficult to form a large spear very quickly and can often take upwards of 30 or more seconds to do so. Higher-level magi are able to form them within moments of casting. Depending on the amount of water ounía in the surrounding air can also determine how fast the spell will be able to form - in very dry environments, it may take a considerably longer time. Return to the top

Duration. Spear of Frost lasts only as long as the mage is able to focus and condense the water ounía to form it. Upon releasing the spear at its target, the spell will quickly disperse. Higher-level magi will be able to hold it together longer if need-be, but it is recommended to release it at targets that are relatively close to the caster or to form larger spears (within reasonable limits of the caster’s ability) for targets at long ranges. Spear of Frost lasts longer than similar bolt spells, however, and one can regularly see the shard jutting out from the object of the attack for a short while after impact before it completely disintegrates.  Return to the top

Counter Measures/Enhancing Measures. Like other bolt spells and most Sphere II abilities, disrupting the caster’s concentration on the spell is often the best counter. Without the caster’s ability to continue holding and condensing the elemental ounía to form the spear, it can quickly lose control, fizzling, shattering, or being launched prematurely.

To enhance the spell, a colder environment or areas rich in moisture makes manipulating and condensing the stray Water ounía in the air easier, and prevents the shard from melting as it travels to the target. Utilizing the spell Area of Frost before casting Spear of Frost (and any water spell, for that matter) is recommended. Return to the top

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