The most important word to remember when it comes to magic is: Explain. Let us explain... As of July 2007, XPI had 804 spells (counting Areas of Effect), 495 of which where created by Adventurers using XPI's researchable magic system! We do not expect everyone to know each of the 800+ spells. If you are hit with a spell you do not know, say "Explain," and they will give you the gist, out-of-game (neither the Caster nor Target should be interacted with during an Explain, but abuse of 'Explain' deliberately to delay Casters or avoid attacks will not be tolerated).
To limit the number of times this is used, you should be familiar with the more common spells. Here is a list of five of these common spells:
|Hold||Target is unable to move for ten seconds (Can be harmed)|
|Lightning||One edged wound to target area (ignores armor)|
|Heal Torso||Target is healed of all injuries to torso|
|Detect lie||Caster will magically know if target's last statement was a lie (Target Player says "Forsooth: True" or "Forsooth: Lie")|
|Shield||Target ignores one physical attack (sword, staff, claw, or other)|
Unless you plan on becoming a mage, do not worry that you can not remember specific effects... just remember "Explain"
For those of you who do plan on becoming a mage, the following is a list of known mage groups. Beware: practicing (or worse, teaching) magic without belonging to an Order recognized by the Collegium of Mages is known as Rogue Magery. Most rogue mages are loners by necessity, though occasionally some have banded together in their own "Rogue Orders". But Rogue Magery is a crime in every country on the Face, and punished severely by the Order of the Stone (or in some cases, the Church of Damien - the Church of Damien and the Church of Tabarian are considered non-voting recognized Orders). Practicing rogues are punished by confiscating their materials and permanently removing their ability to use magic (known as Burning). Teaching rogues (who have "created" other rogue mages) are punished by execution.
Below is a list of recognized Mage Orders. Orders denoted with have (or recently had) active Adventurer members. Orders denoted with are (or were) entirely Adventurer-based. There are also rogue orders that appear from time to time. The most notable of which is the Dragon Council, a counsel of rogue orders that recently appeared as a rival to the Collegum of mages. These rogue orders do not have adventurer members and are not listed below.
This is a mercenary order that actually broke off from the Order of the Stone a few years back. They have a very unsavory reputation and will take just about any contract that they are offered. Make sure you pay them well, because if the people you're fighting make a better offer, they may well turn on you.
An Order formed by the Belgar; a group of humans that (until recently) had been enslaved by the Elves since before recorded history. Developed in isolation from human society, it is broken up into different sects or specialties - one devoted to combat, another to research, another to Guardian pairing - though given the recent displacement of the Belgar, it's unclear how large their numbers remain. Despite their long history, they are the newest Recognized order.
Another mercenary Order, this one devoted to protection magic and bodyguarding, they are highly respected and take their work very seriously.
This is an order dedicated to spreading fun through magic. They're a blast in a bar, and have a reputation for casting "amusing" spells (the latter may depend on your sense of humor). Oddly, for such a "frivolous" Order, they are fairly widespread and well-connected.
The two most powerful religions on the Face explicitly teach their clergy spellcasting. They are not Orders as such, but are recognized by the Collegium and are not treated as rogue mages.
Compared to most Orders, they are both new and small (with no more than a dozen members across the Face), but they're quickly becoming well known. They are dedicated to practical spell research first and foremost.
An all-female Order that shrouds their activities in layers of secrecy. They hold to the private "agreements" they're known for, but the true price of these agreements is sometimes discovered too late for further negotiation. After a recent internal mishap, their organization is in serious disarray and their future uncertain, though they remain as a recognized Order.
Mages that are concerned with nature and nothing else. They have strong connections to the land and are run by tree spirits (called Leshiy).
This is a research order dedicated to understanding the human body and how it works. They have an misunderstood reputation for being healing mages, but this is not the case. They research combat spells just as much as healing, because a fireball affects the body just as drastically as a Heal Grievous Wound.
An Order of magical investigators, they are masters of location and have spells (and other techniques) that are designed to find the truth no matter where it hides.
This is an Order devoted to summoning and binding creatures of Shadow to their will for various tasks. They are respected by learned individuals, though most common folk still consider them and their works "creepy". Though very expensive, the wraiths they summon to carry messages are still considered the "gold standard" in secure, rapid communication. Recently, their numbers were thinned dramatically, but they have stabilized and are attempting to rebuild.
An order known for its esoteric divinations, it is the oldest recognized. Until recently, it was thought to have completely faded away through attrition, but is now known to be still hanging on due to the efforts of a few die-hard (and if rumors are to be believed, actually *dead*) members.
These are mercenary mages, though somewhat more principled than the Blood Moon. In times of peace, they hunt down rogue mages, and hire themselves out. During the most recent war with Drichensmoor, they were under exclusive contract to the Treaty of Gaith, as a counter to Red Messengers. They are the main enforcers of the rules of the Collegium of Mages, and value discipline above all else.
A research order dedicated to finding out why magic works the way it does rather than how it works, and thus favoring thorough knowledge over practicality.
Their motto (if they had one), might be 'Knowledge is Power'. They follow no particular moral code - despite widespread laws against it, they are the only recognized Order known to practice necromancy, and as such are generally seen as villains by most people. The Order itself is broken into sections called 'Cabals', each of which is forcefully lead with its own agenda (conveniently allowing the Order itself as a whole to disavow the Cabal if that agenda goes astray).