“Magic” is a catchall term for several phenomena involving the manipulation of unseen energies. Although their effects seem similar, arcane and divine magic are very different. Arcanists (wizards and sorcerers) learn to understand the potential power in certain natural phenomena and manipulate that power to achieve desired effects. Divine casters (bards, clerics, paladins, and rangers) tap into a supernatural power source called an archetype. And warlocks gain power through communion with a powerful alien mind, giving them great insight into the manipulation of magical energy at the risk of their sanity.

Arcane magic is predictable but tricky. It works the same way every time, and can be clearly quantified with mathematical formulas. Creatures of natural magic (including sorcerers) use it intuitively, without needing an academic understanding of the forces in play, but they’re still manipulating the same energy as wizards.

Divine magic, on the other hand, has its genesis in the collective belief energy of living creatures. It is inherently “themed”, being shaped by the worldview and convictions of its caster. A divine spell is unique, even if its effects are functionally identical to every other casting of that spell. In a sense, a divine spell is a living thing.

Magic is extraordinarily rare; people with magical ability only make up about 1% of the population, and full casters are only about 10% of that. Training in any magical art requires a high price: gold, required adherence to an ideology, loyalty to an individual or organization, sacrifice of material comfort, etc.

Due to the rarity of magical talent and its association with the Dragon Lords, overt casting will make many people suspicious or hostile. Casters should tread carefully.

See also Ley Lines , Wild Magic, and Artificing


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