Magic is very prevalent in the Silent Möbius universe. Ganossa Maximilian, Katsumi Liqueur, Lum Cheng, Mana Isozaki and Nami Yamigumo all possess sorcerous abilities of one sort or another; while Katsumi, Lum and Nami all carry enchanted weapons as well. The Lucifer Folk (and this includes Rally and Rosa Cheyenne) seem to have innate magical powers, and are capable of casting spells as well. Rally mentions wards that have been placed to guard the AMP Station, and we see Nami setting up similar wards at the beginning of Silent Möbius the Movie 1. Then there are such enchanted items as the Kirin dagger, the Sword of the White Tiger, Jesso - the Emperor of Blades, Grospolina - the Emperor of Swords, and the Demon Sword Medium.
In addition to magicians and magical artifacts, there are magical societies (aka cabals, covens or guilds) in existence. In Mobius Klein we meet the 'Magician's Guild', which looks to be headed by Gigelf Liqueur. Not much is said about this Guild, although there are a few brief flashbacks in Silent Möbius the Movie 1 and Silent Möbius Side 5. We see more of the Guild in Mobius Klein, where several of the Guild members engage in magical combat with a foe. It is interesting to note that Mobius Klein also makes mention of a televised 'magician's conference' in 1992. This would seem to indicated that magic is fairly wide spread and somewhat common knowledge, at least in the late 20th century. To further reinforce this perception, in Side 4 of Silent Möbius, Fuyuka Liqueur mentions the existence of magic as part of a TV news report in 1991.
On this page, I will take a brief examination of anime magic in general and how that should be applied to the Silent Möbius universe in particular.
In anime, sorcery is often a powerful and destructive force. Since anime is a visual medium, anime sorcery frequently produces impressive visual effects, and often creates side effects similar to the ones normally associated with psychokinetic (ie. telekinetic or 'esper') powers. (For more information of the nature of anime psychokinetic powers see the Psychokinetics chapter on the Kazei 5 page or the Ylper's chapter on the Silent Möbius Zeta page). Some of the best examples of anime magic in action include Bastard!!, Doomed Megalopolis, Oh my Goddess!, Record of Lodoss Wars and Slayers.
Typically, anime sorcery involves a series of gestures, accompanied by loudly spoken incantations (often, the name of the spell is shouted as it is unleashed). Spells cast in Bastard!! were amazingly destructive and were capable of destroying whole cities! Bastard!! also had some of the best incantations, along with spells called 'Megadeath', 'Slayer', 'Stryper' and so on. Spells in Slayers are also capable of similar feats of mass destruction. Sample spells from that series include: Raywing, Digger Volt , Gaav Flare, Giga Slave and the ever-popular Dragu (Dragon) Slave (which can lay waste to whole regions).
Other sample incantations from various anime:
Darkness from twilight, crimson from blood that flows... Buried in the flow of time... in thy great name, I pledge myself to darkness! Those who oppose us shall be destroyed by the power you and I possess! DRAGU SLAVE!!
Darkness beyond blackest pitch, deeper than the deepest night! King of Darkness, shining like gold upon the Sea of Chaos, I call upon thee! Swear myself to thee! Let the fools who stand before me be destroyed... by the power you and I possess! GIGA SLAVE!!
Oh, My Goddess!:
O Sea of Clouds that Covers Heaven! Hear My Voice! Know My Will! I am Urd, Greatest of the Three Norns! And I call down the LIGHTNING!!
ZARZARD ZARZARD Sakurolo, In the darkness of Hell... the fire of Hell. Be my sword and destroy my enemy. VENOM!
Deep Doomsday... To the spirits of land and air, bound by the pact, fulfill your obligation now. MEGADEATH
BRAIN DEAD BRAIN DEAD... Follow the ground's pledge. Come from the place of Avalon. Gejelan's exploding fire. Burn everything. EXODUS!
KAIZARD ALZARD KISUKU ... KANSEI CROSS-SILK The Thundergod and wind. A sage of Hades. With those two keys, open up the gates of Hell. HALLOWEEN!
Spells, especially offensive spells, are usually accompanied by intense visual effects. There are often an assortment of side effects as well, include swirling winds, bright light (usually coming from below the magician), flaming auras, mists and smoke, and so on. Major spells usually take a few moments to cast as well - very rarely do we see anyone unleash a seemingly effortless attack. In order to capture the feel of anime sorcery, spells should have limitations such as "Extra Time", "Gestures" and "Incantations."
Silent Möbius features several different types of magic. Overall, one can break the magic seen in the series into two groups, Eastern sorcery and Western sorcery. Eastern sorcery includes Lum's elemental magic, Mana's presumed Buddhist rituals and Nami's Shinto wards. Western sorcery seems to be modeled on the tenets of Hermetic and Cabalistic magic, in which the magician calls upon various angels, planets and spirits in order to cast a spell.
Magic itself seems to be a trans-dimensional energy field (or source) that can be manipulated by humans. In Silent Möbius the Movie 1, Rally Cheyenne states: "You [Katsumi Liqueur] are a human with the ability control the super-dimensional power, [which is] so-called 'magic'" In Side 2, Grospolina tells Katsumi Liqueur (paraphrased by me): "Yes, magic is... to put it simply, the order [ie physical laws] of another dimension or world. When these rules are applied to this world, it appears as a very strange power." Furthermore, Fuyuka tells Katsumi: "... you were born with a great power. Your father's power is in you." This would seem to indicate that magic potential is mostly innate and that a magician is more born that taught. To further reinforce this idea, Grospolina tells Katsumi that one reason she is such a powerful sorceress is that long ago (very long ago) humans and Lucifer Folk interbred, giving rise to people that could work magic. Now, magic can be taught, since Fuyuka becomes a potent sorceress in her own right, and it seems doubtful that all the magic using characters in Silent Möbius can trace their abilities back to human/Lucifer Folk parentage (the Yamigumo clan is a prime example of this).
One important note about magic in Silent Möbius is its sheer destructive power. In Mobius Klien, Ganossa destroys an airport. In Side 2, Katsumi states she can't cast her attacks spells because of all the people in the area (she doesn't want them to get hurt). Katsumi's final spell in Side 5 blows apart the Spires Orbital tower. Lum's water dragon (seen in Side 9) seems to be cast at a reduced power level so that it won't harm innocent bystanders. In the same scene, Katsumi casts a spell that wrecks another airport.
This effect might be a touch difficult to model in Silent Möbius. Most characters are not going to be buying spells that affect really large areas. The Game Master way want to consider what sort of effects spells will have on the environment and apply certain 'side effects' as a blanket effect (and not worth a limitation). For example, paying careful attention to where a fire spell landed, realizing that a summoned dragon of water will collapse into an awful lot of free standing water when the spell is over and that general 'fallout' of a magical fire fight will be very destructive to the surrounding area should help.
In the universe of Silent Möbius, I use the term 'Western Sorcery' to describe any sort of magic that isn't overtly Oriental in flavor. Western Sorcerers abound in Silent Möbius, there is Katsumi Liqueur, her father Gigelf Liqueur, Ganossa Maximilian, Rosa Cheyenne and a number of others. As mentioned before, the Western Sorcery used in Silent Möbius looks to be modeled off of the concepts of Hermetic magic, Cabalistic magic and Thaumaturgy. These three magical styles are discussed at length in The Ultimate Supermage, which is where a good deal of the information in this section come from. Note that almost all of the spells given for these styles of magic would be very fitting for use in Silent Möbius, although some of the spell names would need to be changed. Further information about each type of magic is given below:
Thaumaturgy: Thaumaturgy ("Wonder Working") is the magic of comic book sorcerers. It requires little or no use of any sort of ritual trappings (such as wands or magic circles) and is heavily oriented towards combat spells. Thaumaturgic magicians toss off spells at great speed, usually only with a few gestures and a muttered phrase or two. This is very similar to magic in Silent Möbius, where the various spell casting characters tend to launch their spells very quickly, regardless of how long the incantations actually take.
In general, a practitioner of Thaumaturgy doesn't have many limitations on his spells. "Gestures" and "Incantations" are the most likely, with "Extra Time" and/or "Concentrate" usually being used on the more powerful or complex spells. It should be pointed out that Katsumi, despite the long incantations that she has for each of her spells, is almost never interrupted during her spell casting. She can usually fire off her spells quite quickly, regardless of circumstance. Of course, this shows the difference between the source material (comics books and manga) and a role-playing game, where the player cannot always count of getting his or her spell cast uninterrupted.
According the the mythos set up in The Ultimate Supermage, Thaumaturgy draws power from the "Outer and Upper Planes". In effect, the Thaumaturge is drawing energy from elsewhere and shaping it for his own use. In general, the spell being cast is relevant to the plane being accessed. In other words, if a mage throws a flame bolt, then he will call upon the energies of a plane (or lord) of fire to create the desired effect. This concept works very well with the idea that Silent Möbius magic is derived from the manipulation of extra-dimensional energies. In the Silent Möbius universe, spells (especially Katsumi's spells) often call upon various angels and celestial bodies, a process similar to Thaumaturgy. It should be pointed out, however, that this effect is actually closer to Cabalistic magic, which specifically calls upon different angels to accomplish a desired task.
Hermetic Magic: Also known as Hermetic Theurgy ("God Working"), this form of magic was used and practiced throughout Europe. It is a combination of Theurgy and Cabalism and was first developed over 2000 years ago. In effect it should be considered 'ritual magic' since the rituals used to cast spells are very important and must be rigidly followed.
The theory behind Hermetic and Cabalistic magic is very relevant to the Silent Möbius setting. Basically, Cabalistic magic declares that each and every planet has an associated angel (or other being) and that the planets can influence events on Earth. Invoking these beings can aid any magical spell being cast. As in interesting side note, one does not invoke the angel directly, instead one invokes their "divine emanations" or "sephiroth". The significance of this name should be obvious to Final Fantasy fans.
As one can easily see, this procedure for spell casting is virtually identical to that used in Silent Möbius. This conversation between Katsumi and Grospolina from Side 2, Chapter 5 (Katsumi Liqueur) is very enlightening in that regard.
Katsumi: Planetary souls?
Grospolina: That is right. They are the spirits that dwell in 13 stellar bodies of the solar system. You know that all the matter that exits on Earth possesses spirits. Even the Earth itself has one, a planetary soul that is incomparably more powerful and influential than any other spirits on Earth.. Your magic that you use now is powered by just borrowing the powers of the spirits on the Earth.
This borrowing of spirit powers also helps explain the physical appearance of many spells cast in Silent Möbius. Katsumi is noted for casting spells that appear as flights of birds, as whales or even a multitude of female forms (made from water). Spells that one casts in Cabalistic magic tend to visually relate to the being powering the spell.
One very important side note to the Cabalistic aspect of Silent Möbius spell use of this is the relation of Nemesis to several of the major characters. At several points late in the manga series, Nemesis is referred to as 'Goddess' or 'Lady' Nemesis, and statements are made that infer that the 'Goddess Nemesis' can grant her power to those who ask for it. For example Katsumi accuses Ganossa of praying to Nemesis for an increase in power, while Rally states that she made a deal or pact with Nemesis in order to gain her own powers. Of course, what ever is given can also be taken away; in the duel between Katsumi and Rosa, Rosa's powers simply fail outright, leaving her virtually helpless. Katsumi tells Rosa this is because Rosa had angered Nemesis and that she [ie Nemesis] had withdrawn her 'contract' or power from Rosa.
In a Silent Möbius campaign, this effect may or may not become an issue. It is doubtful that any of the Player Characters would have made such a agreement or pact with Nemesis. If they have, the ability for Nemesis to withdraw her power sounds more like a 'Plot Device' than an actual limitation on any one power. Game Masters may want to simulate the effect through a Physical Limitation or through a Watched, but in general, the chances that a character's powers may fail outright seems slim. Of course, if a Player decides to ask Nemesis for more power, the Game Master (provided the GM agrees to this idea) is fully justified in removing the Player Character's new found powers at a whim, especially if the character fails to act in Nemesis's best interests (what ever they might be)
"True" Hermetic Theurgy is significantly more complex than the spell casting seen in Silent Möbius. The Ultimate Supermage goes into great detail about the theories behind Hermetic magic, as well as having extensive notes on what it can be used for. Much of this information could be used in Silent Möbius, although most of the magic seen in Silent Möbius is more direct than the extended ritualized spell casting used in Hermetic magic. To briefly sum up what Hermetic magic is used for, most mages of this type rely on various foci to power their spells, as well as enchanted talismans and summoned spirits. Words of power, usually the specific names of angels (or the various names of God) are also employed. The idea is if you know an angel's name, you can control him, and if you can control him, you can control that which the angel is in charge of.
As a final side note on Cabalistic magic and the use of names, I offer the following angels and their sphere of influence. Note this list is only a brief sampling as Cabalistic scholars listed dozens of angels and their powers.
Barakiel - lightning
Gabriel - fire
Ra'amiel - thunder
Ruchiel - wind
Sawael - whirlwinds.
Powers: Depending on the nature of the spell being cast, the exact powers used to build the spell will vary greatly. The most common powers used to build spells include Energy Blast, Entangle, Flight, Force Wall, Ranged Killing Attack and Teleport. The exact special effects will differ depending on the spell, and include generic magical energy, fire, ice, water and gravity.
Other possible powers include Aid (possibly to STR or DEX), Dispel, Suppress and Telekinesis. Of course, some powers are certainly out of place in the setting, these include Clinging, Density Increase, Desolidification, Duplication, Extra Limbs, Fast-than-Light Travel, Growth, Life Support, Multiform, Shapeshift, Stretching, Swinging and Tunneling.
To truly simulate the flexibility to some of the sorcerers shown in Silent Möbius, Game Masters may want to consider allowing players to purchase the Advantages of "Variable Advantage" and "Variable Special Effects" for their spells.
Disadvantages: There are really only three limitations that should be applied to most in Silent Möbius. These are "Extra Time", "Gestures" and "Incantations".
Of the three, "Gestures" seems to be the least common disadvantage. Katsumi uses obvious gestures to cast several spells, including an aborted attack spell in Side 3 and for casting several spells in Side 7. Note that the limitation of "Gestures" should only be applied to the actual casting of a spell, as none of the spells look to require them throughout.
Incantations present an interesting problem. Only once has someone been interrupted while chanting incantations and thus have a spell ruined. This occurred in Side 2, where Katsumi started a spell but was told mid-way through to try something more powerful. However, since we are trying to work within a game setting and not a carefully scripted manga, "Incantations" can become more of a limitation. It should also be noted that many spells in Silent Möbius don't require incantations. But, to preserve the flavor of the source material, virtually all spells should have this limitation.
Although some spoken incantations in Silent Möbius can get quite long, they seem to be needed only for casting. A few sample incantations are listed below:
In front of me Raphael. Behind me, Gabriel. On my right Michael. On my left, Uriel. Five shining stars surrounding my four side raise flare. Six shining stars shine in the light pillar. Ater malkt va geblar ve deduler lu aurlam amen.
Those spirits of the flames that shines the earth and heaven!! Give me the sword of fire!
Show the name of holy spirits of Sol and Mars, Soral and Baltzabel! Give the power of gold and steel to my sword! I am under Gaea's feet!
Holiest spirit of the holy spirits of heaven, Shad Balshmos Haw! Shine my silver sword with the light to Thor and fulfill the obligation towards Selene!
Holy Spirit Zazel!! The Holy Spirit of Saturn!! Show the powers of evil with your brightness!! From the darkness and ashes, rise!! Silver Sparrow!!
Most spells look like they can be cast in very short periods of time. Katsumi's attack spells can probably be fired off as a simple 1/2 Phase action. Some of the more powerful ones may require an additional Phase to generate (meaning Katsumi will then have to cast the spell on her next Phase. Really powerful spells (like Katsumi's Entity destroying spell from Chapter 1) might take as long as a full Turn. Note that as with the comment made about Silent Möbius incantations, no one has ever really suffered due to a long casting time for a spell (although there have been a few close calls). But, as with incantations, the Game Master should ensure that anyone who takes "Extra Time" as a limitation is made to recognize why it is a limitation.
Other limitations applicable for Western Sorcery include "Concentration", "Focus" (especially items like pendants and knives) and "Increased Endurance". The "Limited Power" Limitation requires the GM pay attention to what the player is putting down. "Only vs Lucifer Folk" isn't going to be a limitation in this campaign (unless the GM is going to really play up the weird supernatural aspect of the game, in which case one could get a -1/4 - maybe).
As a final note, Force Walls in Silent Möbius seem to operate under very specific guide lines. Force Walls are normally called barriers, shields or spirit shields in the manga. Barriers have "Invisible Power Effects: Sight", "No Range" and normally only last for the caster's Segment or Phase. To simulate this, the Force Wall is bought with the limitation of "Instant power" (-1). Shields and Spirits Shields look to last longer and can be set up to seal of openings and objects. These are types of Force Walls are still invisible, though.
Sample Hermetic/Cabalistic Spells: Sample spells that were used in the Silent Möbius series are as follows:
Emerald Prison: Katsumi encases an Entity in a jewel-like or crystal shell. The crystal mass forms at the Entitiy's feet and then surrounds the target.
Power: Entangle: 5d6, Set Effect: 5 DEF, 5 BODY (-0), Stops Sight Group (+10
points), Indirect (Fires upwards from target's feet) (+1/4), Incantations (-1/2)
Active Cost: 75 Points
Real Cost: 50 Points
The incantations are: "Venus protector goddess. Aphrodite imprison it in emerald as I command."
Silver Sparrows: Katsumi is fighting a Lucifer Folk. She chants her incantations and then extends her right hand in front of her. A large white square appears and a swarm of silver birds spring forth. The Lucifer Folk fires an energy blast at Katsumi and the attack is caught by the sparrows and pushed back the way it came.
Power: Missile Deflection: All Ranged Attacks, +6 OCV, Gestures (-1/2), Incantations (-1/2), Magical/Supernatural Attacks Only (-1/2)
Active Cost: 32 Points
Real Cost: 13 Points
The incantations are: "Holy Spirit Zazel!! The Holy Spirit of Saturn!! Show the powers of evil with your brightness!! From the darkness and ashes, rise!! Silver Sparrow!!"
Spirit Shield: Katsumi generates a 'spirit shield' that serves to confine and damage an entity. It consists of five stones set up as anchor points. An entity is trapped within, at which point Katsumi destroys the entity with another spell.
Power: Entangle: 6d6, Extra Time: Full Turn (-1), IAF: Keystones and magic
circle (-1/2), Immobile (-1)
Active Cost: 60 Points
Real Cost: 17 Points
Power: Ranged Killing Attack: 3d6, Indirect (Fires upwards from base of magic
circle) (+1/4), Extra Time: Extra Phase (-3/4), Gestures (-1/4),
Incantations (-1/4), No Knockback (-1/4), Linked to Entangle (-1/2)
Active Cost: 56 Points
Real Cost: 19 Points
Total: 36 Points
The incantations are: "In front of me Raphael. Behind me, Gabriel. On my right Michael. On my left, Uriel. Five shining stars surrounding my four side raise flare. Six shining stars shine in the light pillar. Ater malkt va geblar ve deduler lu aurlam amen."
Sword of Fire: While fighting Mova de Badinia, Katsumi casts her 'sword of fire' spell, using a length of pipe as a focus.
Power: RKA: 2 1/d6, +1 Stun (+1/2), Beam (-1/4), Incantations (-1/2), Requires
Foci: a length of pipe or other sword like object (-1/2)
Active Cost: 60 Points
Real Cost: 27 Points
The incantations are: "Spirit of the dancing flame, grant me unto me a sword of explosive fire!"
For a more in depth examination of the spells cast in the Silent Möbius manga, see the Silent Möbius Grimores section.
Eastern Sorcery is used to describe Silent Möbius magic that looks to be Oriental in origin. Within the context of this game supplement, Eastern Sorcery is much less rigidly defined than Western Sorcery, and here is used almost as a catch-all term for everything from Shinto rituals to Buddhist enchantments. In general, Eastern magic involves manipulation of the natural world and often requires certain foci (such as a wand). Chinese magic in particular is often centered around the five element system, consisting of earth, fire, metal, water and wood.
Of all the various magic using characters seen in Silent Möbius, only three seem to fall under the 'Eastern Sorcery' heading. The most obvious character is Nami Yamigumo, the Shinto priestess. The second character is Mana Isozaki, since her spells (see in Side 4) look very much like Buddhist mantras. The third character is Lum Cheng, Avalanche Wong's granddaughter. Lum's spells involve the elements and incorporate trigrams from the I-Ching.
Although I will try and discuss Lum, Mana and Nami's powers separately, I must admit that I am not (by any means) an expert on the ins and outs of Shintoism, Buddhist ritual or Chinese magical beliefs. Most everything written here will be with regards to the Silent Möbius setting and how such magic was used within said setting. If possible, factual material will be incorporated in order to make everything more complete.
For other ideas as to the powers and abilities of Eastern Sorcerers, I recommend the following: the Feng Shui RPG, GURPS China, GURPS Japan, Mystic China (Palladium Books) and Watchers of the Dragon (HERO System)
Shintoism: Shinto the the original religion of Japan. It is very much a nature religion, concerning itself with the activities of the kami (spirits) that inhabit nearly everything in Japan. Mountains, streams,trees, large rocks... almost everything in Japan is said to have a resident kami. In fact, the total number of kami is said to be over 8 million.
Many elements of the Shinto religion are instantly recognizable to anime viewers. The torii (shrine gates) seen in front of Shinto shrines, the ofuda (talismans) used by many anime priests and magicians, the shimenawa (sacred ropes) that are often tied around sacred objects and places and the gohei (folded paper steamers) that are usually attached to the shimenawa.
Nami Yamigumo, is a Shinto priestess, also known as a miko. As such, she has been trained in certain rites that allow her to restrain, confine and eliminate evil spirits. Many of the powers Nami exhibits are seen in other anime as well, allowing one to create a reasonable approximation of a Shinto priest's powers for gaming purposes.
Ofuda: The most prominently featured power of the typical Shinto priest (and many other anime characters that are involved with the supernatural) is that of ofuda. Ofuda are sheets of rice paper inscribed with mystical symbols and words (the graphic to the left is an example of an ofuda). They serve as universal wards, keeping evil away, dispelling harmful spirits and destroying monsters. Ofuda are very common in any manga or anime that features Eastern magic or the supernatural, including 3x3 Eyes, Doomed Megalopolis, Phantom Quest Corp. and even the Hong Kong live action film A Chinese Ghost Story.
Ofuda serve many purposes. Nami uses them to create barriers, deflect attacks and burn her opponents. Most ofuda-created barriers are made by placing the ofuda on a surface, such as walls or doors. Usually, two are needed and the barrier forms between them. Nami can also hurl an ofuda into the path of an oncoming attack, blocking the attack. Both of these powers are best represented by Force Walls. As with Western Sorcery Force Walls, Nami's thrown ofuda also have the limitation of "Instant power" (-1). Note that Force Walls created by placing two ofuda on a surface are permanent until the barrier is broken or the ofuda are removed
When thrown against a supernatural target (such as an Entity). an ofuda will burn the target. This is normally a Ranged Killing Attack, with such advantages as Continuous and Uncontrolled. Possible limitations would be Charges, Focus and Gestures (must throw). Some characters seem to be able to throw their ofuda long distances; Nami, on the other hand, looks to only be able to affect a target very close to her, thus, her ofuda would have the "No Range" limitation. As a side note, the opening credits for the Silent Möbius TV series show Nami hurling a cloud of blue glowing ofuda, although this might just be artistic license. Nami can throw her ofuda at an object in order to make a barrier, by the way.
Other possible (and logical) powers for anime ofuda include: Dispel, Drain, Energy Blast, Force Field, Force Wall, Ranged Killing Attack, Suppress and Transformation Attack. Conceivably, ofuda could even be used to purify a region (Change Environment) or to heal someone who is injured (Healing).
For further information on ofuda and other paper charms, see the Chinese Paper Charm Magic section of the 3x3 Eyes Hero page.
Holy Water: Water is an important purification medium in Shintoism. For example, a person may dump a bucket of cold water of their head in order to purify and cleanse themselves, and a ladle of water may be poured over an object in order to bless the object. Sake is also used for these rituals, and we just such a use in Side 2, where Nami is anointed with sacred sake prior to being given the Dagger of the Kirin. Nami also carries several vials of holy water with her. She uses these vials in Side 2, and in Silent Möbius the Movie II. Nami's holy water acts just like her ofuda, being a Ranged Killing Attack, Continuous and Uncontrolled attack. The holy water acts like acid, eating away and dissolving its target (thus, one could give the holy water "Penetrating" as well). Limitations such as Charges, Focus, Gestures (must throw) and "Range Based on STR" (-1/4) are all suitable.
Other powers: Nami has a few minor powers that may (or may not) be suitable for Shinto priest/priestess player characters. For starters, her robes are inscribed with a mystical text that protects her from harm. This effect is best achieved by buying the robes as Armor. She can also sense auras (she can detect Lucifer Folk and states that Rosa is 'evil'). This is typical for Eastern Magicians, especially those that are tuned into the flow of 'chi'. Finally, Nami may or may not be capable of telepathic communication. The scenes in the manga are unclear on this point, and to be honest, such communication doesn't quite fit with the rest other exhibited powers. Nami also carries two powerful magical weapons, the Dagger of the Kirin and the Sword of the White Tiger. These items are discussed in depth below in the Mystic Artifacts section.
Lum Cheng: Lum is a powerful magician in her own right, capable of fighting the evil incarnation of Katsumi Liqueur in a one-on-one duel. Most of her power seems to be contained within the enchanted spear Jesso. By using this weapon to channel her power, Lum is able to cast powerful elemental magic, such as flame blasts, walls of water and explosions of earth and rock. Almost all of Lum's magic is accompanied by glowing trigrams from the I-Ching, which float in the air around her, or appear underneath her feet. It is the appearance of these symbols that lead me to label Lum's spells as 'Eastern Sorcery.'
As of Side 10, Lum has been shown using Jesso to cast spells relating to Earth, Fire and Water. The spear can also be used to fly, which can be considered an aspect of Air. Furthermore, Lum can use Jesso to block or deflect incoming spells, which might be another aspect of Air. Finally, Jesso itself is made from Metal. These five elements (Air, Earth, Fire, Metal, Water) loosely correspond to the Chinese Five Elements (which are Earth, Fire, Metal, Water and Wood). Thus, Lum's magic may be derived from the ideas behind Chinese Five Elemental sorcery. The only problem with this is that Lum hasn't used anything that seems to correspond to 'Wood' and 'Air' isn't one of the five Chinese elements. Her spells do seem to be closely linked to the classic Greek Elements of Air, Earth, Fire and Water, but as these are Western ideas, it doesn't make sense that she would be using them (Lum is Chinese).
At any rate, Lum's elemental magics are very impressive. She can create a huge dragon made from water, throw blasts of flame, deflect incoming attacks and render the earth with her spells. None of her spells really seem to require "Incantations" (the closest she gets is "Jesso! Fire formation!"), although a few may require "Gestures". Some of her spells, such as the dragon made from water, definitely require "Extra Time". Jesso looks to used to focus and channel her spells, although she doesn't always need the spear in order to cast anything. Game Masters may want to require a Player who wishes to write up a character with similar powers to define exactly what Jesso (or a weapon like Jesso) is used for. A good possibility is to use such as weapon like Solitaire's (Champions 4th Edition character) Widget, in which the weapon gives one Reduced Endurance on all powers. Another idea would to give the last 20-30 Active Points of the character's spells the OAF limitation, meaning that the character's spell are much more powerful when the weapon is carried in hand as opposed to kept nearby.
Mana Isozaki: As of this writing, Mana has only used her mystic powers once, in Side 4. Thus, the exact nature of her powers is fairly mysterious. But then, the character herself is a question, with almost nothing known about her origins. She is a powerful sorceress however, and has demonstrated the ability to destroy a Lucifer Folk all by herself. Based on the scenes in Side 4, Mana's spells look to be a lot less diverse than Katsumi's. We see her cast a variety of attack spells, all of which look to be variants of an Energy Blast or Ranged Killing Attack. She also creates what looks like a Flash attack early in Side 4. After Nami is rescued from the Lucifer Folk, Mana heals her, or as she puts if "The part of the Lucifer Folk that adapted to her must be purified, anyway." This purification could be defines as a simple Healing Aid, or a Dispel or even a Transformation Attack.
Almost all of Mana's spells require Incantations. Some of them are very long, and sound as if she's calling on certain Buddhist deities (she certainly doesn't look to be speaking Japanese). For example:
On Amiritei Unhatsuta On Amiritei Unhatsuta On Kirikiri On Kirikiri
Noumakusa umantabasa randansen...... Untara Takanman
Namusarababo dadaramasorogihiya Namuariyabarakite ishiharaya Bodaisatsutahaya Namubasarahaniya: On Amiritei Unhatsura Bodaisatsuta hayatachitato hihihikaya Tohiharazi yaharani Sowaka On Kiri kiri On Kiri kiri"
Because of the limited amount of screen time given to Mana while she is using her powers and the fact that I am fairly unfamiliar with the concepts behind Buddhist beliefs, it is hard to come up with any hard and fast rules concerning powers for characters like Mana. Game Masters are encouraged to do their own research, as well as work with what seems suitable for their campaign.
May other types of magic are possible in the Silent Möbius universe. A few suggestions include alchemy (both the Chinese and Western European versions), celestial calligraphy (where one writes spells out in advance on specially treated sheets of paper and usually burns the paper to activate the spell), mudra finger lacing techniques (which are usually to manipulate one's 'chi'), chi manipulation itself and vodun (better known as voodoo). As always, the Game Master should decide before hand which magic systems he wants to use and which he feels fit his conception of the game universe.
Along with all the sorcery prevalent in Silent Möbius, we also have a large number of enchanted objects. These objects are all weapons, and all have fairly impressive powers (some more some that others). A brief description of each artifact is as follows:
Dagger of the Kirin: This is a small dagger or tanto. It is about a foot long, and is used by Nami. Aside from its normal use as a blade, Nami has used the dagger to summon the spirit of the Kirin, a horse or dragon-like entity.
Demon Sword Medium: This is a short-bladed sword made from some dark metal. The blade has a saw-toothed back edge with no real hilt, is intelligent and can speak to some extent. Medium controls who ever picks it up, turning them into an evil version of their former self and sending its victim out to cause chaos and destruction. The blade also appears to augment its wielder's current magical powers. Medium's control over its victim can only be broken when the victim uses Medium to kill a someone the victim holds dear to their heart. Mana killed Genvara this way, while Kiddy sacrifices herself to Katsumi.
Grospolina - the Emperor of Swords: Grospolina is a huge sword-like weapon, a full eight feet long and probably weighing close to 600 pounds. Grospolina is apparently a living being that takes the shape of a sword in this realm. It is very intelligent and can speak. Aside from acting as a blade, it is unclear if Grospolina has any further powers, although Katsumi often uses it as a focus for her spells later in the series.
Jesso - the Emperor of Blades: The weapon looks to me made from a single sheet of this metal. It has a thin, flat shaft and a broad head with openings in the blade. Strange symbols are written all down the shaft. Jesso is not intelligent (it cannot speak), but can sense the presence of Grospolina. Jesso can be used to fly, and Lum uses the spear to channel her spells. Lum has kept the spear wrapped around her wrist as if it was a small piece of paper.
Sword of the White Tiger: This weapon is a very long katana. It has no guard, and is kept in a plain, wooden sheath. Razan, Nami's father used to carry this sword, and the blade is capable of cutting through almost anything (including a full-sized Lucifer Folk and Grospolina). Although Nami is given the sword in Side 4, we don't see her use the weapon until Side 11.
As can easily be seen artifacts can have all sorts of mystical powers associated with them. In many cases they can generate powerful attacks (such as the Dagger of the Kirin's ability to quote: "...cut the air") or do the impossible (like the Sword of the White Tiger cutting an Entity in half). When creating magical artifacts, the sky is the limit. Several good examples of mystical artifacts that would work well in the Silent Möbius universe can be found here, in Enchanted Weapons.
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