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General Putting The Awe Back In Magic

The burgher himself unlocked her shackles, making a grand show of producing the right key from the thick ring at his belt. The oldest, most ornate, and most worn of the bunch.

He gave it to two of the younger men and waved at them to free the prisoner, taking himself well back and away to watch them struggle with the old locks.

And as the heavy metal cuffs fell from her wrists to the stones underfoot with a clang and a rattle, he sneered and announced, “I’ll believe in this mighty magic when I see it, and not a moment before.”

His words were meant for the watching men of the town, not the freed captive, but he turned when they were done to see how she took them.

The young woman of few words met his bristle-browed gaze with a slight smile. Then she shrugged, turned away from him and the men of the town in a swirl of dark tattered robes, and murmured something swift and liquid under her breath, words they couldn’t quite catch—or that were in a tongue unknown.

And the air around her swiftly-weaving fingertips was suddenly alive with sparks, racing motes of light that spiraled down to the floor in front of her worn-toed boots like fireflies caught in a whirlpool.

And then burst with the roar of a dozen lions into a raging pillar of white flames taller than the loftiest towers of the Castle, a pillar that cracked and melted—melted, by All The Gods!—flagstones it spun across as it marched away from her to strike the towering black gates.

And with shrieks as ear-piercing as they were brief, those thick armour plates and the man-thick timbers that wore them were gone, locks and hinges and stout door-bars and all—simply…gone.

Leaving only an empty doorframe, its arch scorched by the vanished whorl of flames.

As the men of the town all stared at it in disbelief, a few shards of blackened stone, cracked away from the massive blocks of the arch by the heat of that brief magic, plummeted from the arch to shatter on the blackened flagstones. Clack, clack…klak.

“Well, now,” the burgher stammered, his voice seeming far away. And shorn of all bluster. Everyone turned to hear his verdict.

And blinked at what they beheld. Despite his paunch and wrinkled old age, the leader of the town had somehow taken himself half across the chamber in a trice, to the grudging shelter of the lee of an old stone pillar. “Well, now.”


o.l.d-page-129.jpg

Magic.

The ‘not real’ part of our fantasy roleplaying games, and fiction.

Yet also an essential part; we feel vaguely cheated when it’s not there, even if it’s scarce or long-fallen from old days of greatness. The element that makes so many monsters dangerous and feared, and that keeps many imaginary worlds from being ruled by the brute who commands the biggest, nastiest gang of brutes (er, king with the biggest army).

Yet the very same precise codification of magic, its workings, and the details of its clashings that make it understood and somhow more “fair” around the gaming table has, by the nature of exhaustive explanation, robbed magic of its chief glory: awe.

That’s a shame, because awe is one of the emotions (or moods, if you prefer) that we get to feel least in our lives, especially in this age of information, when most people can swiftly learn a lot about anything and so strip away its mystery, the lure of the unknown, in short order.

Obviously magic, like everything else, will have more awe clinging to it when it’s mysterious rather than known to nigh-everyone in full detail. When the game master’s descriptions of what a spell looks like when it manifests, and what it does, are attentively listened to by everyone around the gaming table—because everyone’s eager (nay, desperate) to learn all they can.

Rather than just flipping to the right page of a rulebook to read all about it. Which points at this: one road to this sort of mystery that’s available only to game masters running their own rules systems or substantially modifying published rules systems is to keep the practical details of magic (how spells are cast, the gestures and ingredients and incantations—verbal, somatic, and material components in D&D) secret. Things to be observed when others cast magic, and noted down in one’s own magical workbooks, or said by NPCs who are paid much in coin and service to do so, or paid even more to train a PC in how to cast and wield a lone spell.

This precious secrecy will tend to make those who can cast spells do so in private, or in public only in emergencies or for a lot of compensation.

It also, at a single stroke, makes magic, and its lore, the most prized treasure in a game.

Another way of making magic more awe-inspiring is to have it vary in effects from place to place, or by who or what is involved.

If a stranger wizard casts a recognizable spell and it shakes the valley rather than snapping in midair like a firecracker, there’ll be instant awe. Or at least respect, if not fear.

If a spell that’s supposed to force open a door is cast with the aid of a grimy old bone carving that looks small in the caster’s palm, and destroys the door and the wall around it rather than just cracking the door open, again there’ll be a reaction that could soon be awe.

And if a spell cast in a sinister ruin deep in a gloomy forest either sputters feebly or splits the heavens with a deafening roar, rather than conjuring its usual merry lantern-flame, awe won’t be far off.

Theatrics help with awe. Tomes rising out of chests with menacing slowness, all by themselves, and opening as eerie glows kindle about their pages, said pages turning by themselves as deep, booming voices speak from those same books, demanding to know who disturbs them.

Voices that speak suddenly out of empty air to herald the awakening of magic. For example: “Ah, more intruders. Let the deaths begin.”

Another way of making magic feel special and more precious is to keep it scarce. Or needing as a focus or consumed component in its castings something rare (the grave-dust or a bone from the grave of a truly good person, or a dead mage) or valuable (a gem of a certain type, size, and flawlessness). Or draining the life-force of the caster or a slave or pet or willing third party. Or leaving the caster vulnerable, by rendering them unconscious or physically weak, or revealing one of their most precious memories, for every spell cast, as vivid holographic moving images in midair, brightly glowing, for everyone on the scene to see.

Magic should have a cost. Perhaps not a price in coins, but it must be paid for. My players will not soon forget the wrinkled old near-skeleton who sat on her throne shrouded in cobwebs—until they approached, and she cast a spell that flung open many doors that her courtiers were hurled through unwillingly, into her presence. Courtiers who began to shrivel into lifeless husks with every spell she cast—‘hung,’ waiting spells unleashed by a lone word each—as she grew younger and more alive and vigorous with each casting, the adventurers suffered under the clawing damages of her magics, and her court died around her to pay for it all. The thief of the party had hopes that she could be outlasted; the party could run her out of courtiers to drain. Hopes that were dashed when the floor beneath the heroes’ boots opened up to dump them into caverns below where dragons were magically chained—dragons that withered even as they attacked the PCs, their life-force stolen by the queen on her throne above.

The throne, of course, was itself magical, and in the end soared into the skies to enable her escape from the adventurers, to scheme and ready herself for their next meeting.

The awe came back then, when the queen’s magic whisked dead dragon after dragon aloft to follow her. The thief wanted to grab and ride the last one, to go along, but the rest of the PCs were a trifle saner, and grabbed him and held him back.

So I could dole out more awe, on a game night to come.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Ed Greenwood

Comments

Krachek

Adventurer
I know I want magic to be fantastic,
but in real game the mighty wizard have to deal with damage resistance, various immunity, magic resistance, legendary resistance, and at last when its big spell finally hit, he just realize that he have done less damage than the fighter and the paladin.
 

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Coroc

Hero
The burgher himself unlocked her shackles, making a grand show of producing the right key from the thick ring at his belt. The oldest, most ornate, and most worn of the bunch.

He gave it to two of the younger men and waved at them to free the prisoner, taking himself well back and away to watch them struggle with the old locks.

And as the heavy metal cuffs fell from her wrists to the stones underfoot with a clang and a rattle, he sneered and announced, “I’ll believe in this mighty magic when I see it, and not a moment before.”

His words were meant for the watching men of the town, not the freed captive, but he turned when they were done to see how she took them.

The young woman of few words met his bristle-browed gaze with a slight smile. Then she shrugged, turned away from him and the men of the town in a swirl of dark tattered robes, and murmured something swift and liquid under her breath, words they couldn’t quite catch—or that were in a tongue unknown.

And the air around her swiftly-weaving fingertips was suddenly alive with sparks, racing motes of light that spiraled down to the floor in front of her worn-toed boots like fireflies caught in a whirlpool.

And then burst with the roar of a dozen lions into a raging pillar of white flames taller than the loftiest towers of the Castle, a pillar that cracked and melted—melted, by All The Gods!—flagstones it spun across as it marched away from her to strike the towering black gates.

And with shrieks as ear-piercing as they were brief, those thick armour plates and the man-thick timbers that wore them were gone, locks and hinges and stout door-bars and all—simply…gone.

Leaving only an empty doorframe, its arch scorched by the vanished whorl of flames.

As the men of the town all stared at it in disbelief, a few shards of blackened stone, cracked away from the massive blocks of the arch by the heat of that brief magic, plummeted from the arch to shatter on the blackened flagstones. Clack, clack…klak.

“Well, now,” the burgher stammered, his voice seeming far away. And shorn of all bluster. Everyone turned to hear his verdict.

And blinked at what they beheld. Despite his paunch and wrinkled old age, the leader of the town had somehow taken himself half across the chamber in a trice, to the grudging shelter of the lee of an old stone pillar. “Well, now.”

View attachment 121826


Magic.

The ‘not real’ part of our fantasy roleplaying games, and fiction.

Yet also an essential part; we feel vaguely cheated when it’s not there, even if it’s scarce or long-fallen from old days of greatness. The element that makes so many monsters dangerous and feared, and that keeps many imaginary worlds from being ruled by the brute who commands the biggest, nastiest gang of brutes (er, king with the biggest army).

Yet the very same precise codification of magic, its workings, and the details of its clashings that make it understood and somhow more “fair” around the gaming table has, by the nature of exhaustive explanation, robbed magic of its chief glory: awe.

That’s a shame, because awe is one of the emotions (or moods, if you prefer) that we get to feel least in our lives, especially in this age of information, when most people can swiftly learn a lot about anything and so strip away its mystery, the lure of the unknown, in short order.

Obviously magic, like everything else, will have more awe clinging to it when it’s mysterious rather than known to nigh-everyone in full detail. When the game master’s descriptions of what a spell looks like when it manifests, and what it does, are attentively listened to by everyone around the gaming table—because everyone’s eager (nay, desperate) to learn all they can.

Rather than just flipping to the right page of a rulebook to read all about it. Which points at this: one road to this sort of mystery that’s available only to game masters running their own rules systems or substantially modifying published rules systems is to keep the practical details of magic (how spells are cast, the gestures and ingredients and incantations—verbal, somatic, and material components in D&D) secret. Things to be observed when others cast magic, and noted down in one’s own magical workbooks, or said by NPCs who are paid much in coin and service to do so, or paid even more to train a PC in how to cast and wield a lone spell.

This precious secrecy will tend to make those who can cast spells do so in private, or in public only in emergencies or for a lot of compensation.

It also, at a single stroke, makes magic, and its lore, the most prized treasure in a game.

Another way of making magic more awe-inspiring is to have it vary in effects from place to place, or by who or what is involved.

If a stranger wizard casts a recognizable spell and it shakes the valley rather than snapping in midair like a firecracker, there’ll be instant awe. Or at least respect, if not fear.

If a spell that’s supposed to force open a door is cast with the aid of a grimy old bone carving that looks small in the caster’s palm, and destroys the door and the wall around it rather than just cracking the door open, again there’ll be a reaction that could soon be awe.

And if a spell cast in a sinister ruin deep in a gloomy forest either sputters feebly or splits the heavens with a deafening roar, rather than conjuring its usual merry lantern-flame, awe won’t be far off.

Theatrics help with awe. Tomes rising out of chests with menacing slowness, all by themselves, and opening as eerie glows kindle about their pages, said pages turning by themselves as deep, booming voices speak from those same books, demanding to know who disturbs them.

Voices that speak suddenly out of empty air to herald the awakening of magic. For example: “Ah, more intruders. Let the deaths begin.”

Another way of making magic feel special and more precious is to keep it scarce. Or needing as a focus or consumed component in its castings something rare (the grave-dust or a bone from the grave of a truly good person, or a dead mage) or valuable (a gem of a certain type, size, and flawlessness). Or draining the life-force of the caster or a slave or pet or willing third party. Or leaving the caster vulnerable, by rendering them unconscious or physically weak, or revealing one of their most precious memories, for every spell cast, as vivid holographic moving images in midair, brightly glowing, for everyone on the scene to see.

Magic should have a cost. Perhaps not a price in coins, but it must be paid for. My players will not soon forget the wrinkled old near-skeleton who sat on her throne shrouded in cobwebs—until they approached, and she cast a spell that flung open many doors that her courtiers were hurled through unwillingly, into her presence. Courtiers who began to shrivel into lifeless husks with every spell she cast—‘hung,’ waiting spells unleashed by a lone word each—as she grew younger and more alive and vigorous with each casting, the adventurers suffered under the clawing damages of her magics, and her court died around her to pay for it all. The thief of the party had hopes that she could be outlasted; the party could run her out of courtiers to drain. Hopes that were dashed when the floor beneath the heroes’ boots opened up to dump them into caverns below where dragons were magically chained—dragons that withered even as they attacked the PCs, their life-force stolen by the queen on her throne above.

The throne, of course, was itself magical, and in the end soared into the skies to enable her escape from the adventurers, to scheme and ready herself for their next meeting.

The awe came back then, when the queen’s magic whisked dead dragon after dragon aloft to follow her. The thief wanted to grab and ride the last one, to go along, but the rest of the PCs were a trifle saner, and grabbed him and held him back.

So I could dole out more awe, on a game night to come.
i must admit i failed to find out which spells were used in the two examples, but being descriptive also for mundane combat surely makes the roleplay experience much better.


P.S. Could you please give us a clue what the two epic spells were ooc? :p
 

jasper

Rotten DM
DM: "The wizard sweeps a hand before him, as if his gnarled fingers are slicing apart the air itself. Some unnatural paralysis grips your body and terror floods your mind as he chants for what feels like minutes, his voice droning over every sound in the world, drawing the light from the sky, pulling the heat from your veins until you feel your skin burn with the cold inside you. His eyes flare wide, but there is nothing within them but infinite darkness, drawing your soul into an abyss where reality is just the plaything of demons. Your spirit clutches the edges of his eye sockets, desperately holding onto what little sanity you have left, screaming against the void that you will not give in to this madness.

"Then . . . with a exhalation like the guttering of a candle in its last moments of light . . . he finishes that single sweep of his hand, those brief syllables of incantation. Only an instant has passed, but in that instant you glimpsed and perhaps could understand a fraction of the horrific truth of the universe, of the chaotic power he tapped in order to shape reality to his will.

"You feel the bolt of invisible force as it flies from his gnarled fingers to strike your heart."

Player: "Oh crap. Um . . . do I need to make a Con save?"

DM: "No, he just cast magic missile. You take, . . ." {rolls} ". . . four damage."
Jasper "Ok the DM has pulled his 12 A Description of Magical Spells script."
Chaosmancer " I think is 20 C script "
Tonguez " You both wrong it 24 Hike."
Jasper, " We know during the third fireball description of the night."
Descriping the magical scene is great in a book, or short story. But some of us dms don't have the mojo to do so. And in a world where magical users are as common as beat cops. Would the magical description be all that varied? Would a magic missile from a wizard trained in NYC be different from a wizard trained in Chicago? Or depending on the school trained at would the magical spell have a certain visual effect?
CNN, "Jasper the beat cop (trained is the NYC Pizza school) in casted his magic missile and stopped the robbery. Witnesses said the sauce was kind thin." Aka the cop pulled a 38.
MSNBC, " Jasper the beat cop (trained in the Chicago Deep Dish Pizza school) casted his magic missile and stopped the robbery. Witnesses said the mushrooms were canned." Aka the cop pulled a 44.
 

Von Ether

Adventurer
The only game where players talked about the metaphysics of magic and seemed awed and surprised on a regular basis was the original Mage. Of course how the magic would "work" was described by the players before the die roll in hopes of getting bonuses.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
I really like theatrics and evocative descriptions, whether it is for a manifesting god or phosphorescent moss in an underground cavern. It makes the immersion in a fantasy experience come alive.

For awe I feel it is more about power and theatrics that feel powerful, but there is an important place in core D&D magic for that. There are high level powerful spellcasters. There are artifacts. There are gods and powerful magical beings. There are the planes and magical phenomena.
 

TheSword

Adventurer
I think Paizo have a lot to answer for in driving the magic mart experience through pathfinder and their Pathfinder Society games. That reduced magic items to just another mechanical benefit along with fears and traits.

5e has helped combat this somewhat.
 

A 'hot take' that came to me today and that seems apropos to this article: Gygax made a mistake when he made full-spectrum spellcasters a PC option, one that has been compounded by further developments.
I'm not saying you're wrong, per se, but if he didn't do it, someone else would have, and whoever did, either that RPG would have become dominant by now (probably overtaking D&D in the '80s or very early '90s), or we'd have split market on fantasy RPGs, where a bunch of people were playing a magic-heavy RPG, with full casters as PCs (and perhaps all PCs would be magic-users of some kind), and a bunch of people were playing a sword and sorcery RPG, where powerful spellcasters were just "the enemy", and I'm pretty sure the second one would be fading in popularity.

Also, computer games would look completely different. All the early CRPGs and JRPGs which were based on or inspired by D&D (Wizardry, Ultima, Final Fantasy) would have been lower-magic on the PC side, and thus we'd see a very different array of games evolving from them, before whatever game decided to allow full casters came sweeping in. It would be interesting, to say the least.

Relevant to Ed's article, I think the Forgotten Realms did a good job of making magic more "magical" not so much by making it rare (it felt fairly common), but by making there be a lot of it, and by making it bizarre - you constantly came across spells and magic items you'd never seen or heard of before in the FR. A spellbook from a dead wizard could be a treasure-trove. The gods granted bizarre powers to Specialty Priests, that might take you entirely by surprise.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Relevant to Ed's article, I think the Forgotten Realms did a good job of making magic more "magical" not so much by making it rare (it felt fairly common), but by making there be a lot of it, and by making it bizarre - you constantly came across spells and magic items you'd never seen or heard of before in the FR. A spellbook from a dead wizard could be a treasure-trove. The gods granted bizarre powers to Specialty Priests, that might take you entirely by surprise.
It is one of the things I really like about the Realms, lots of magic and lots of varieties. Whether you are talking about Thay or the Chosen or Spellfire or the hundreds of new magical items and spells with lore behind them.
 

TheSword

Adventurer
I’m comfortable with all wizards having the equivalent of the Spell Thematics feat - that is they can change the visual and auditory effects of the spell as they like. I think that and deciding a mage sigil is a good start to making magic unique. If they want the benefit they need to describe the spell themselves though.
 

I disagree that practitioners of magic from other sources (e.g. faith) would feel obliged to demonstrate their power. Ultimately magic of any kind is going to represent power. And the degree to which people would share it would depend mostly on how powerful they are and how vulnerable sharing these practices would make them (plenty of secretive religious organizations through history)
The difference between historical examples and DnD is that the more followers of the faith, the more powerful the individuals and the deities are.

"Worship my God and you may be found worthy of doing this" is a pretty dang effective recruitment tool.

Jasper "Ok the DM has pulled his 12 A Description of Magical Spells script."
Chaosmancer " I think is 20 C script "
Tonguez " You both wrong it 24 Hike."
Jasper, " We know during the third fireball description of the night."
Descriping the magical scene is great in a book, or short story. But some of us dms don't have the mojo to do so. And in a world where magical users are as common as beat cops. Would the magical description be all that varied? Would a magic missile from a wizard trained in NYC be different from a wizard trained in Chicago? Or depending on the school trained at would the magical spell have a certain visual effect?
CNN, "Jasper the beat cop (trained is the NYC Pizza school) in casted his magic missile and stopped the robbery. Witnesses said the sauce was kind thin." Aka the cop pulled a 38.
MSNBC, " Jasper the beat cop (trained in the Chicago Deep Dish Pizza school) casted his magic missile and stopped the robbery. Witnesses said the mushrooms were canned." Aka the cop pulled a 44.

Oh, I don't disagree. It is hard to do and takes time and is something I only really pull out for the "arcane threat" category of enemies. For example, when my players fought an Archmage he unleashed waves of magical power (high level magic missile) and summoned shields of power (mirror image) ect.

But, I wouldn't do it for every caster ever (unless I have a cool visual idea) because it is more effort than I generally want to do.
 

Eric V

Adventurer
I think Paizo have a lot to answer for in driving the magic mart experience through pathfinder and their Pathfinder Society games. That reduced magic items to just another mechanical benefit along with fears and traits.

5e has helped combat this somewhat.
How? Virtually every class can cast spells, and multiple spells are on multiple spell lists.

Magic seems very common to me in 5e; what were you referring to?
 

How? Virtually every class can cast spells, and multiple spells are on multiple spell lists.

Magic seems very common to me in 5e; what were you referring to?
They were referring to Magical Items being expected as just stat boosts for the characters. They are much more rare and you can't just assume that you could just buy any item you want.
 


Ace

Explorer
Probably true. I think if the Fighter, Barbarian, Rogue, Ranger, Monk, and Bard were all martial classes primarily (with magic sub-classes only, and maybe then not even in the PHB). It would make the Wizard, Cleric, Warlock, and Sorcerer more special, and you could tone them down a bit too.
I am thinking of just going with Witch (a 3rd party class) and Wizard as spell casters since both use spell books and that's it. Other classes would only have martial variants.

The poor monk kind of gets the shaft but while I am a huge Kung Fu fan , Kwai Chang Cain just doesn't fit my Brothers Grimm inspired thing.
 
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I played in a game set in the present day that was concerned with real world esoterica such as the Rosicrucians and demonic possession. We only discovered that magic existed thru play. We never learned how to use it, and were scared that doing so might make us vulnerable to possession, though I still don't know if that was the case. It was very much a game of hidden information.
Sounds awesome... do you remember the name of the game, or was it homebrew?
 

Doug McCrae

Legend
Sounds awesome... do you remember the name of the game, or was it homebrew?
It was a homebrew that we called the Dream Game. Initially the game was played as a series of oneoffs that were all about going into dreams to deal with "externals" - ghosts or demons - that were troubling the dreamer. Paul, the GM, then ran it as a campaign, with about half the game being dream intrusions and half being set in the real world. We started to realise that our enemies, a group of externals and their human allies called the Fallen, were capable of using magic in the real world, but we never figured out how.
 

pemerton

Legend
If "awesome" magic means elaborate GM narration, that's not really my thing.

Some of the players in my group liked the way magic played out in our Prince Valiant session involving The Crimson Bull.

Prince Valiant locates magic on the GM side of things - so in that scenario I was able to establish elements of scenes (a demon-possessed bull; fire sprites; etc) that defy natural explanation. But it's not strictly GM-side: one of the PCs has a silver dagger consecrated in the name of St Sigobert, and was able to use that dagger to destroy the demon. Important to that outcome was me as GM respecting the player's judgement that, in the context of trying to destroy a demon, a holy dagger would be effective.

To the extent that any "awe" was established here, I think it was a result of magic being an element of the fiction rather than being just a factor in the the mechanics.
 

pemerton

Legend
The clear and concise power descriptions of 4E lend themselves to this. Because you're spending less time processing the so-called natural language and precise measurements, I find you have more time to think about what the effect actually looks/sounds/feels like.

I encourage my players to think of appropriate descriptions for all of their powers, particularly spells. Verisimilitude helps a lot with immersion, IME.
I like magic in 4e, but more for the way it is able to be so flexibly incorporated into skill resolution and skill challenges. It supports a very fiction-first approach.
 


Jimmy Dick

Explorer
I have always liked limiting magic in any campaign I ever ran. As a GM I felt like I had two choices, limit the magic or go full bore into a magic-oriented campaign. Back when I ran AD&D 1/2e I could do that and it worked well enough. When I got back into gaming with Pathfinder 1e, I had to make a lot of adjustments because that edition had a lot of magic in the game. In fact, many times it felt like it had too much magic and relied a lot more on the mechanics. The story really fell to the wayside sometimes, especially in Society play. Don't get me wrong, there were many good Society scenarios and the modules were often really good. It came down to the players more than anything.

This is one reason I like the approach of Pathfinder Second Edition. The gating of certain things like spells, items, feats, and powers has generated a well-balanced set of classes. Stuff that would negatively upset the balance of the game has been removed beyond the player's grasp for the most part. The entire approach to the edition is one where if you want this X, you have to give up this Y. You do not get something for nothing. There is always a price to pay for anything you want for your character. It also helps to remember that just because magic works for players one way, it does not have to work the same way for NPCs and monsters.

I really like playing Wizards in most editions. But I don't want the wizard character to outshine the entire party. I like the way spells are gated in PF2. My Wizard has something he seeks in every scenario and quest; knowledge. Ultimately, as a Wizard he craves power, but that power is gained through knowledge. Whether it be the making of scrolls or items, the casting of uncommon and even rare spells, he seeks the power that goes with them and that comes from the knowledge that unlocking those things requires.

As a GM, the use of descriptive adjectives is very important in roleplaying so as to give the players a visual description that accesses their imaginations. I feel that this is an area that has always been the GM's province. They really set the tone for a session. Sometimes I feel that visual stimuli through video games has come with a double-edged sword. We see the visuals in the game when we play a video game, but we have to "see" the visuals on a table top with our imaginations. I feel a deep sense of gratitude towards a player from Brazil who asked me to go beyond the mechanics of PF1 and put in more descriptive narrative instead of focusing on the mechanics of the encounters. It was just a matter of returning to the basics and thanks to their request I did focus on setting during the sessions.

That put the magic back into the games.
 

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