ICRPG Magic questions



Hi, everyone!
I have a few questions about how you guys are incorporating Magic into your games.

  • How do you combine the previous magic system with the expanded one in Magic? Would I have to give spells in Core categories and Levels?

  • Do you store spells as LOOT? Can players get them stolen? My game starts in prison, so I would like to know how to limit my players at first, but I also don’t want players to lose hard-earned spells…maybe they have magic resistant cells…

  • If a Mastered spell type grants you half-COST, then it’s it impossible to pay 16HP as the book says? By the time you can cast Level IV spells, you have Mastered that spell type anyways, and would only pay 8HP of COST.

  • Core spells are always treated as level 1, no category according to the rules in MAGIC.
  • Spells are still Loot items. It’s one of the limiting factors of the system.
  • This I think is up to you and your interpretation. What feels right for you and your table?


All CORE spells are considered level 1 spells and you can assign them categories as you see fit.

Spells are considered loot, but can be stored into objects as a way to double up on space. A Yog Crystal, or a spellbook can store multiple spells inside them and only take up 1 inventory slot. But lose the crystal or the book and say bye bye to all the spells inside them as well.

But you can store a single spell into any item in ICRPG MAGIC. So maybe your prison scene a single starter spell can be stored in a headband, silver tooth, gloves, shoes, necklace, pet rat friend, anything really.

And your correct on the mastered half cost effect. Its just there as an indicator of how to do the math without mastery.


That’s extremely helpful, guys. Thanks! So I can have my players imbue treasured items with their magic–like Totems from Inception or something, where only they could truly know their value.


If magic is only available through LOOT, then how do I explain memorized spells? I have a player who wants to play a witch who draws hexes on things; would she not be able to remember that? Or does magic just need to be explained entirely differently?


so when my mage was thrown in a cell with my team. we all had out gear taken, except one guy had a robot arm, and i had my spells. they take up loot slots, but they are just spells. i would just say they are memorized, thats how my DM handled it, or they are in a book( if you want to take them away for a bit) they would have to find there stuff to get the book back. or like i said if you just let them have them, they can burn through there hp. lol


The Witch could have wand, bag of trinkets, runestones, chalk, or charcoal as tools required to make the hexes work… just a thought


Yes, there are materials required for drawing like that. That’s a good observation.


That’s what I’m thinking. The risk is still there for sure. However, I feel like a maximum security prison would have a plan in place for captive mages…maybe a magic-resistant field that makes magic HARD until disabled?


you will know what spells they have, so even if they have something to help out, it will cost them precious HP to cast it. and if they dont have a spell, it will cost they Int rolls and time to come up with something. ether way the timer is running.


If they take up LOOT, can they just not be lost? How does this work out in-universe? Why could a mage not carry as much if they know more spells?
I’m trying to make spells both learned AND take up LOOT, but I don’t think I can do both. If it’s learned then it’s in your head, not in your pack.


why cant you do that. i think thats how it is in the book. like i said, i didnt lose my spells when striped of gear.


I love nearly every single thing in ICRPG. But the one thing I have a hard time wrapping my mind around is all magic being loot.

Never forget, and Hank will be the first to tell you, you can make it your game and tweak the rules as you see fit.

In regards to magic, in my games I still opt for spells to be often times learned by the character and this do not treat them as something that can be destroyed or taken barring a major plot point. On occasion magic may be loot (a scroll or artifact) but I think that magic users should have at least some spells that define them as permanent. You can still have spells take up a loot slot though for mechanics though.


what @Wildstar said. dont over think it and have fun.


I do the ‘spells are tatooes’ thing. I just find it really interesting narratively to have a character’s skin slowly be deformed with magical glyths, and that they become more identifiable as magic users as they gain more spells. In my Alfheim, magic is very badly regarded by the rest of the population.

The idea of it being on their skin also nicely links to using hp to cast and I imagine it glowing when being used.

I will, at some point, also introduce the idea that there is a group of assassins that hunt magic users for their valuable skin.


heck yeah. magic tattoos. perfect. now they cant be taken…or can they. mwa ha ha


um…YES to this… please do this…:astonished:


I think this is the route I’m taking. I think losing HP is risk enough, and they don’t need another negative for learning Spells. In the case of the prison encounter, I can use magic-resistant fields in the cells that make using magic HARD (as this is maximum security, after all. They’re not stupid).


I’m curious, do you allow players to play with the traditional Spell Burn rules, or have you upgraded to the new Cost system? I don’t think it would seem fair if some payed Cost and others didn’t. I’m also wondering how this will play out with players hurting themselves…where’s the healing? They’d better be careful!


Your call. I think if you do the new cost system it should be spread across all the players myself, but its your game and you should do what fits your table/world.

If you go the tattoo route (which is badass) maybe it takes effort to etch it into the skin and then it no longer takes up a loot slot. So until it gets tattooed the spells can be like scrolls with a one and done mentality. So after getting etched into the skin they can use/give the scroll at 0 cost and then it burns up or something.