General Occult Questions Thread

Discussion about the occult and arcana in general. (Don't call it "magic" if you want to be taken seriously by scholars.)
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Maina
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General Occult Questions Thread

Post by Maina » Wed Oct 20, 2021 6:02 pm

I often have many occult-themed questions, so I decided to start a thread to consolidate them in one place so I don't spam a great many threads. Others can add their own, maybe? But I'd rather keep this to stuff that aren't like deep lore secrets, but stuff the typical occultist might know.

I was very familiar with almost every scrap of lore dropped on channeling in The Other Game. Rather than make assumptions that anything works at all the same, I had some questions! These are all lore questions, not mechanic ones, for the sake of roleplaying as an occultist of various sorts.

1. How does basic, no-frills channeling work? Is basic, no-frills channeling even a thing, or is it only applied along with a form of magic? I understand there is no such thing code-wise, but I'm talking lore-wise.

2. If there is basic, no-frills channeling, is the method taught/used differently by the different guilds? Or even the different specializations within the different guilds?

3. Once you have the basic channel technique, how does a given occultist actually bring up their specific magic of choice? How does channeling druidry differ from channeling sorcery from the user? Do Arcanists channel? What do they channel?

4. How does each magic feel to use and manipulate? Do druids feel one or more primal beings on the other end of the 'connection' whenever they channel? Do sorcerers hear the nether whispering to them or feel its will tugging at them? Does this change when actively casting or raw-casting?

5. How are actual spells brought into being? Words, rituals, memorized symbols or patterns? Petitioning to some external force to provide the 'data' to be translated by the caster? How does an occultist bring their spell into reality? How does this differ from raw casts, for those who can?

6. How does the nether react to its user? I've seen one ability where it actively enters the user's body; can it choose to not burn on contact, now? Or is there some other explanation for the nether not burning the host? 'help nether' says it's destructive to nearly all types of matter. Is it well-known, or at least known to occultists, what sorts of matter are not destroyed by nether?

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Maina
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Re: General Occult Questions Thread

Post by Maina » Wed Mar 30, 2022 3:50 pm

These were mostly answered a while back. Here are the answers, courtesy of Zombi's note-taking (I am bolding those Rias has said he needs more thought for):

Q: How does basic, no-frills channeling work? Is basic, no-frills channeling even a thing, or is it only applied along with a form of magic? I understand there is no such thing code-wise, but I'm talking lore-wise.
A: Rias' idea is that channeling is a catch-all term for channeling your will (channel footpad, channel strength, etc). Putting your will into a channel would be focusing on something mentally, like Sorcery channels or Druidry channels. Without having something to point it at/focus on, nothing would happen. You can't channel nothingness.

Q: If there is basic, no-frills channeling, is the method taught/used differently by the different guilds? Or even the different specializations within the different guilds?
A: This sort of thing would apply if you look at channeling as meditation; you're focusing will and preventing something else from breaking in. So channel footpad/strength/adrenaline would be like channeling, but they don't use the same technique, it's just different forms of channeling your will to make something happen. So a generic version would be meditation.

Q: Once you have the basic channel technique, how does a given occultist actually bring up their specific magic of choice? How does channeling druidry differ from channeling sorcery from the user? Do Arcanists channel? What do they channel?
A: He may have to get back to us on specifics regarding druidry/sorcery, but arcanists do channel. They channel as they're drawing the diagrams/glyphs, so they channel the form of those to get them just right. When we start getting affinities, it will be more evident; the more skilled people will be better able to understand these things. Bardic words, also a form of channeling.

Q: How does each magic feel to use and manipulate? Do druids feel one or more primal beings on the other end of the 'connection' whenever they channel? Do sorcerers hear the nether whispering to them or feel its will tugging at them? Does this change when actively casting or raw-casting?
A: For druids, it can depend on where they are/what situations they've gotten themselves into, their affinities to certain entities, etc. It gets complicated for primal stuff, but it's safe to say that they would start feeling a Presence with their connections. The whole power of druidry is Connection, after all. He would love to have Druidry give flavor messages at some point depending on where you are, etc. Lots of competing, tugging feelings.

A2: A lot of sorcerors will tell you that sorcery/the Nether feels like it has a will of its own in some capacity. Sorcerors will often say they weren't planning to do XYZ, but did it with Sorcery and they attribute it to the Nether influencing them in some way. "I conjured the Nether to do THIS, but it did THIS instead, and that was the Nether doing its own thing." It's also cold; sorcerors would feel a drop in temperature as they're channeling it. He may add that in as a flavor thing (kinda cool, he says, because he is a dad).

Q: How are actual spells brought into being? Words, rituals, memorized symbols or patterns? Petitioning to some external force to provide the 'data' to be translated by the caster? How does an occultist bring their spell into reality? How does this differ from raw casts, for those who can?
A: This is a deep one, man. He may have to raincheck this one.


Q: How does the nether react to its user? I've seen one ability where it actively enters the user's body; can it choose to not burn on contact, now? Or is there some other explanation for the nether not burning the host? 'help nether' says it's destructive to nearly all types of matter. Is it well-known, or at least known to occultists, what sorts of matter are not destroyed by nether?
A: Nether, in that statement, is nether in its natural state where it is always damages stuff. There are instances where Nether will not damage something; there are various states nether can take, such as things from the Festival. Raw nether ("Haha, I conjured raw nether!") is problematic. It's not well-documented what causes states of nether to shift; a warlock could conjure nether and want it to not hurt and wear it as a toupee, but it wouldn't work, they can't will it into nonhazardous circumstances. It's Flubber. Baffling, confusing, damaging Flubber. There are specific reasons; we just don't know it.

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Maina
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Re: General Occult Questions Thread

Post by Maina » Wed Mar 30, 2022 3:53 pm

And now some new ones!

1. In The Other Game, I believe it was made explicit that you are gathering ambient nether when channeling. Here, the help files refer to 'channeling and manipulating.' Are sorcerers creating Nether when they channel, and it vanishes when they are no longer channeling? Or is it exclusively gathering ambient nether? Both?

2. There is at least one IC theory that Nether is created by negative emotions (and it seems to be the case with the apparent stories behind the various Nethrim combat zones): do sorcerers require a certain mental or emotional state to channel nether? That is, is a sorcerer who is channeling focusing on the feelings of hate or anger or fear or whatever in order to do so? What role does the focus play in this?

3. In The Other Game, Nether actively wanted to be used, making it the easiest magic to learn and use (represented mechanically by getting new channels earlier than any others). Related to the above, the need for a Focus seems to have made it less the 'easy magic that wants to be used' as it cannot simply be used by anyone at any time. Is the 'Nether wants to be used' still a thing? How does it manifest, if so? There have been previous posts confirming Nether still seems to have a 'will of its own' and sometimes does its own thing; is using the Nether like trying to ride and steer a wild stallion that needs forced to go where it wants? Is it mostly tame and just sometimes bucks?

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