forum Anyone willing to help me create a magic system?
Started by Tabby
tune

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Tabby

Hi guys,
I'm fairly new to this website and I've seen how amazingly creative you can all be and I was wondering if any of you people could potentially help me. Essentially a friend and me are rewriting a story we started years ago as little kids (it's terrible), it's set in a separate fantasy world, based semi around the medieval period twisting real world events or myths (i.e. the plague) to help with the plot.

It also has a magic system, unfortunately I have absolutely no clue how to further develop it.
The main premise I have is it being based around crystals and the user must have a crystal on them (necklaces, rings and staffs are all popular options - although other method ideas would be appreciated). Different crystals would have different properties (maybe allow different powers, although I don't want every character to be able to access every power) and I think maybe the size would effect the level of power (a reason to have a staff rather then a necklace). I think the crystals could also glow, potentially different colours if a character has multiple abilities they can channel through it.

The types of powers are the thing I'm most stuck about. Elemental powers and healing are all I really have at the moment, but I have no actual development on that (other then healers not being able to heal themselves, and healing potentially hurting them, I'm not entirely sure on that one). The other character also has "acid blood" but I'm not actually sure what it does, or if I'll even keep that power. Shape-shifting (currently the only form I have is a wolf) is also possible, but I have no downside to it as of yet.

Any development on the current ideas, or new ideas are both appreciated. Also feel free to scrap/change anything I mentioned. Thanks in advance.

-Tabby

@JamHudson

Okay, so… um… I have an idea that may or may not fit, but here goes nothing.
So one thing that will add more “realism” or maybe tension to the story: what if these crystals didn’t have an unlimited supply of power? What if you could use them, but sparingly, depending on the crystal? Sure, a bigger crystal could give better and stronger effects, but it also has a larger supply. Also, the more power someone absorbs from crystals, the more they “adapt” to them, so they basically change themselves. So if you don’t want all of your characters to be able to use all of the powers, then maybe they’ve used less power from these crystals. Maybe the acid blood comes from a very high amount of crystal power, therefore they are almost full of power, can use almost all abilities, and they can generate a small amount of power without crystals (just an idea).
Another idea for these crystals: what if you used said crystals not just to power a human being, but other inanimate objects? What if you could use them to enchant weapons or armor (if armor is involved much in this story), or simply a machine?
Now, as for other abilities, elemental could be a good one. But maybe you could also add in abilities that break the laws of physics too, like:

  • walking through walls
  • INVISIBILITY (or bend the light around you)
  • changing your location of gravity
  • … something else.

So, you could use these ideas or maybe change them around a bit. I’m not even sure if this’ll work out for you, but who knows? If you need help with anything else, I’d be more than happy to help.
Gee, I never get to help. This is fun.

@Delta-The-Dark-The-Spoopy-Bean-Seed-Plant-And-Proud-Supporter-Of-Aizawa's-Teaching-Methods

You could also have sorts of "Artificial" power types. Elemental magic is popular, but what if you could mix forms of magic to create something completely new? For example in my world, I've got a basic web of my magic system.
Light Magic->
FIRE-> EXPLOSIONS = LAVA =
WATER-> ICE = FREEZING BLOOD =
EARTH-> FORESTRY = ANIMALS = GRASS
WIND-> STORM = WEATHER = GRAVITY

Dark magic->
Dark magic can be added to different types of magic to form entirely new types
Dark+water= Blood magic (The ability to control someone's blood)
Dark+earth= perhaps a sort of posion
Dark+etc

The point is, you can think of really anything and use it to make some new form of magic.

Magic items?
Some cool ideas would be the ability to infuse your crystals into clothing perhaps, giving them extra effects. Any weapon could be made magic by using a crystal, and perhaps certain weapons only work with them. For example, a sword whos blade only appears if you have an elemental crystal in it. Depending on the crystal, determines the type of blade. Fire crystal: Flaming blade. Water: Maybe an ice blade that can freeze what it touches. Etc.

Hope I could help give you some ideas. I'm personally still finalizing my magic system so there are a few bumps, and it gets a LOT more complicated with my system. This was just a base outline for ideas. Have a good day

Tabby

First of,@ELJEFEHUDSON Thank you so much for contributing! ^-^
I definitely like the idea of crystals potentially running out of power after a certain amount of use/time. Although I think perhaps a way to recharge them would be necessary, perhaps after a certain period of time they'd recharge themselves (and better/bigger crystals would recharge faster/not lose their energy as fast) or even use the users energy (the better the user is at maintaining their energy and the less demanding the spell/magic is the longer they can use the crystal for - meaning they can't just continually swap crystals).

I actually had a similar idea where the angels (the villain's minions/army) could recharge themselves/their powers at statues in churches (due to magic properties) although I wasn't sure I was going to use it. So this could fit in perfectly!

I think using the same crystal for a prolonged period could have other bonuses, unlocking more/better powers, making it use/sap less energy and perhaps even enough practice could let you use limited powers crystaless (or perhaps you are born with them, I.e my character can speak to animals). Maybe to balance it characters can only have a certain amount of abilities?

I haven't decided the role of armour yet (although I think it will feature in the villains army thing), but weapons will certainly play a part, so perhaps them being used to enchant weapons (I.e a bow with crystals in the wood would be more powerful - in particular if they are powered via the users energy). I'm not sure if I'll feature machines - I'd love to innovate and create new machines but in the setting it's hard. I'm sort of toying with how much it's based on our medieval times and how much I should muck about with it and in that regard the level of education, technology, innovation, healthcare etc.

Should I just stick to the four basic elements (fire, water, air, earth) or are they any others I could play with? Maybe walking through only some materials, only having limited use or only seeing through walls? I'm always trying not to make the powers insanely overpowered, because whilst I wan't them to be useful and powerful I don't want the battles to be:
Sword person: starts attack
Main character(s); magic We won!
Perhaps invisibility could only last a short period or even just make you blend in and not get noticed?
I'm not quite sure what you mean by "changing your location of gravity" do you mean being able to reverse gravity for yourself? Or perhaps the surrounding area (basically walking on the ceiling?).

The story is very, very much work in progress. And I don't always have abundant time, but I'll try my hardest. If I finish my main character would you care to critique/beta read her? Your ideas have definitely been a great help! Thanks again
-Tabby

Tabby

I'm intrigued by the idea of blending different forms of magic to create new magic (perhaps even working together to form new magic).

Different artefacts/items needing certain crystals which could alter them is definitely also something I'll experiment with.

Thanks for the ideas you guys! There great and will definitely help.
Can I ask you how long it took you to develop your system? And what elements you have (I'm not sure if I should go beyond the basic 4 - earth, fire, wind/air and water)?

Thank you very much and I hope your day is great as well.
Good luck with your magic.
-Tabby

@Delta-The-Dark-The-Spoopy-Bean-Seed-Plant-And-Proud-Supporter-Of-Aizawa's-Teaching-Methods

Me personally, I'm still developing my system, and have been doing so for roughly 2 months now. I'm trying to make it as detailed as possible and leave no loop holes, to where it just leaves it as "oh its magic woo". I have over 12 different types of elements including water, earth, fire, air, lightening, storm, dark, light, blood, bounding, blinking, conjuring, stat additions, requipping, and more.

@Yamatsu Earthbender

To give a bit of a downgrade to the invisibility, make it only work when you're not moving. There's always a little outline whenever someone goes invisible in other media, so having that and making the character get caught when they shift will certainly be a twist!

Maybe instead of just elemental magic, make each crystal do something with waves. Maybe one crystal could store and record sound, or be like a light prism where instead of separating light into it's individual colors, separate the hustle of a street corner into conversations that can be easily tuned-in to. More powerful crystals could create small tremors, or heat the air around it. This could range from an explosion like a grenade to dropping it into a pot to quickly boil water. Rather than recharge the crystals, make them a scarce resource that people fight over. Have a really BIG crystal that a kingdom has, and they chip off small pieces to distribute to the nobles.

Have both natural and artificial crystals play into each other! Rock candy, drugs, whatever!

"What kind of quartz is that?"
snorts cocaine "What?"

Tabby

I'll just reply to all of you in one post so it takes up less space:
Post one (Delta): How hard did you find it to develop your system? And did you find there where a lot of loopholes? What did you find was the best way of coming up with new ideas and developing your system?.
I'll definitely look at adding some more elements, maybe try link them to a (currently non-existent) creation story.

Post two (Yamatsu): That would definitely work in terms of invisibility, and I think I'll use that (thanks very much!). One of the characters getting caught could certainly add a twist, I'll probably use that.

The waves idea could also definitely work, I'll play around with it and see what I can do.

In terms of recharging, I'll probably do both (conflict caused by wanting all/more crystals for more powers or wealth is also something I could add), as crystals needing to recharge puts a huge limit on magic that I want there. Magic in this world isn't supposed to be unlimited, easy to obtain or do, so having a large barrier preventing constant use I think could aid in plot development.

People trying to replicate crystals but not 100% successfully and it being a race to create new, better and improved crystals could be a key plot point (IDK, I'm chucking ideas in as they come to my head).

Post three (EL): What idea?

Noodle

Hey, I'm a little new here too, but I was thinking… What if it was possible to create your own magic? You could do so by combining the crystals into a dust, maybe? For example, (not saying you should use theses elements) you have a fire crystal and a earth crystal and it gives you some sort of mix between the two? The amount of combination can or cannot be infinite up to you. No the best example, but I hope you get my idea. This is just a way to make sure that all your characters don't have the same magic abilities. Hope you like it! :D

Noodle

As for how to get the crystals, how difficult do you want it to be? If you don't want it to be too difficult, you could just have it available on the public market.

@JamHudson

What if you could harvest crystals from monsters or other creatures? If there are monsters in this, of course.
What if instead of buying crystals, they were used as the currency? The rare, more powerful ones were worth more, things like that?

Kellsey

This is gonna sound really basic, but why not have the crystals be conductors instead of the source of magic? Like, people have magic within them, but they're not able to harness it without a conductor. And in order to shape the magic, they have to study a specific area that gives them knowledge on how to do so. Like, a person has magic, has a conductor, but they need to study in order to bring that magic into the world.

Tabby

Right, so first of my gosh sorry for such a late reply everyone - haven't refreshed my tab for a while and thought this thread was kinda dead, but thanks everybody. The idea of combining crystals (somehow…) could work for sure (although I'm not quite sure how yet). I do get what you mean, don't worry. "Public market" is a loose term as the story features separation of "normal" people and "magic" people, although crystals will have some form of monetary value. I think smaller/less powerful crystals would be quite freely available (think torch or 1980s phone kinda power). And then bigger/rarer/more powerful crystals would probably be dealt/traded with in a more "hush, hush" manner (think black market kinda thing) as many people don't have the power to wield them and quite frankly shouldn't be trusted with power.

Some form of evil does exist, although I'm still in the VERY early planning stages as we're trying to rescue the mess we made before. Also time clashes don't make life easy, but I expect monsters probably will exist, so a "questing" reward could be something (which would have a logical way for a character to acquire a crystal).

I have explored the conductor idea, and will continue to do so - probably using it. I hadn't thought much about training but I definitely will now - I've got loads to do (I've loaded myself with so much, I don't have all that much time to devote to writing D=).

Thank you so much everyone and sorry for the late reply again.
-Tabby

P.S: As a thanks to everyone who's helped so far, I thought I'd share a little preview of one of the main characters: Rosalind. I'm probably going to change her quite a bit, but its a start. As I don't have premium I can't create a magic page - so this is the best you'll get (sorry), but rest assured all your wonderful ideas will go to good use.