Magic systems–fun and headache

A friend of mine always says, whenever you invent a magic system, give it to a bunch of gamers–they’ll soon find the weak spots and explore them endlessly. 😀

The thing is, it’s plain hard to trace all the possible consequences of there being magic in the world. Would people still have bothered inventing gunpowder? What about cars or steam engines? Medicine? And just what can you do with the magic? Fireballs, healing, rain? There are a million little choices to make, and it’s not always easy to tell whether you’ve made the right ones. Some choices that seem fun now can bite you later, while some minor twist you threw in as being logical can open up amazing possibilities down the road.

There’s a flip side to tracing all consequences, limits, and possibilities too–if the magic is too logical, is it really magic? Or science?

As you’ve probably guessed, I’m busy tracing the effects of having magic in my fictional world, whilst trying to strike a good balance between magical and logical.

And fun, let’s not forget. 🙂

What are your favorite magic systems?

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2 Responses to Magic systems–fun and headache

  1. As long as there are limits and internal logic, I really don’t mind, though I guess the traditional spell-chanting, wand-waving type is a little dull. There are some great quirky ones around. Brandon Sanderson is particularly good at coming up with interesting ones, like using chalk and geometry to draw spells, or swallowing different metals for their different magical properties.

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