World of Warcraft
The Nature of Arcane Magic
The Four Laws: There are four important rules to remember about the use of arcane magic in Azeroth.
- Magic is Powerful. Magic in the WoW RPG is is the difference between a slave and a master, a foot soldier and a king. Few races and nations can operate without powerful mages and warlocks. The use of arcane magic is growing: historically, each time this has happened before, a great disaster shortly follows. However, even though the history of arcane magic is well known, mages and their patrons invariably come to the same self-serving conclusion: It won’t happen to them.
- Magic is Corrupting. Magic corrupts the soul; if the humblest of persons om Azeroth became a practitioner of the arcane, by the time that practitioner reached the higher levels in her art, all traces of her humble roots would be lost. Magic breeds pride and arrogance. Magic corrupts the body; it ages the caster before her time and hastens the blight that the world inflicts on things fair and beautiful.
- Magic is an Addiction. When one feels the power of an arcane spell coursing through one’s body as it’s being cast, resisting the urge to cast it again is difficult.
- Magic Attracts the Twisting Nether Like Flies to Honey. The Burning Legion has invaded Azeroth three times, drawn by the power of the Well of Eternity and those who employ it. Magic is a literal gateway drug that allows dark beings such as Sargeras to bring evil influences to the world. Those who employ arcane magic must deal with demons and other servant of the Twisting Nether.
Arcane spellcasters may, under certain circumstances, be forced to make a Corruption check. A corruption check is a Will save made against a target number; if the character fails this save, he suffers Arcane Corruption damage.
A character has a Arcane corruption allowance equal to his Spirit plus total character levels. In essence, this number represents the “hit points of the soul” – when a character’s Arcane Corruption allowance reaches zero, the character drops one Corruption category and receives a Corruption Effect. Corruption Effects might include delusions, infirmities, madness and addictions depending on the spell caster’s preferred school of magic. Corruption categories are (from best to worst) normal, tainted, marked, defiled, complete.
Arcane magic & the Horde
Under the leadership of Thrall, the orcs have rediscovered their ancient Shamanistic traditions. In an attempt to rid the Horde of its demonic corruption, Thrall banned the use of warlock magic and necromancy. Externally, the Horde keeps watch for any taint in its ranks. The Horde hunts down orc warlocks who embrace the yoke of the Burning Legion and savage trolls who follow the old ways.
In the midst of this all, the Forsaken stand apart. The Forsaken support the Horde because it suits them and because so far the Horde has not interfered with the Forsaken’s quest for power. The Forsaken regard arcane and divine magic in the same manner; tools (just like the Horde) to use and discard at need. Despite their diffidence, the Forsaken are creatures of magic. They owe their existence to magic. The Forsaken may view magic as a tool, but they cannot deny it is a tool they need.