Friday, August 12, 2011

Rockstars. Wizards. Scientists.

Guitars. Wands. Pencils.
Songs. Spells. Equations.

It came to me when I saw and listened to clips of "It Might Get Loud" and saw some of the comments about it. High-level wizards could be like viewed as rockstars and scientists in the fantasy milieu by their peers.

When they're old, I suppose you could look on them like the aged caricatures of white-haired wizards. But they do have a past -- possibly a boring one, possibly a wild one -- filled with obstacles and achievements and a long history of enemies and friends and contacts.

A first level character though? In love with the music. Fascinated by the science. Awed by the various rising stars and all-out living gods in the field.


  1. I like that idea - you get a bit of that in AD&D with all the spells named after Bigby, Mordenkainen, Tenser, etc. You'd have to flip the switch from magic users as dangerous outsider to making them a bit more populist.

  2. And getting a new spell is like finally finding out the fingering of that damned guitar god solo.

  3. I vaguely remember a Glen Cook novel where magic was a matter of mathematical equations.

  4. @Dariel: guess this wasn't one of the Black Company novels, eh?

    If I recall correctly, in Babylon 5, the Technomages each had their own paradigms. One of them (Galen) used mathematics and multi-term formulas to frame his 'spells'.

  5. Good ideas! Of course, I think some it would depend on the setting. In some worlds high level wizards might be looked down on (sort of like rock stars were at one time) or worse.

    "It Might Get Loud" is a great documentary.

  6. @Trey: it definitely depends on the setting, but in the more generic ones, and ones where there is -- more often than not -- a name attached to a spell, I think it's a good way to get a grasp of the subculture.

    That being said, it does raise some issues, like how often do wizards get to hang out with one another and share news? But I was thinking also of -- I think it was Mr. Conley who posited a world where there were no 'commoners' and instead had many 1st level characters populating the world...

    And I agree about "It Might Get Loud". :)


That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.

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