I'm currently working on a hard magic system in a high fantasy story and I have decided to base my magic system on physics, more precisely, on energy transfer. So, my mages can draw their powers from six different "essences" :

Heat, Electricity, Light, Mechanics, Sound and Chemistry

Every mage is attributed to one of the essences, but he can use the energy given by the essence the way he wants. I've tried to respect the laws of thermodynamics, by establishing that every mage needs to have a source and a target. For example, they take the heat of one source to give it to a target, so that heat is coming from somewhere and not created out of nothing and this way, I hope I'm respecting the conservation of energy.

As to the second law of entropy, in this case, trying to redirect energy from one body to another is actually a synonym for trying to give order to a system. So the more you try to give order by transferring and manipulating energy, the more you will have entropy so you have to spend so more energy.

To do so, every mage has to "tie" their target to a source, but of course, in order to heat up a room by using thermal energy, they can't just use the Sun as a source. The target and the source must be equivalent in some way, because using a source that is too or less powerful might have disastrous consequences on the target they've been tied to.

Since a mage is naturally attributed to one essence, I've decided that they can't just transform one type of energy into another. They can simple transfer and manipulate one type of energy, the one attributed to their essence, and that's it.

I would love to have some feedback and understand if any of this makes sense.

  • $\begingroup$ Feedback is by definition opinion based. Such questions are off topic on this site. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jun 29 at 2:12
  • $\begingroup$ Hello, please refer to the how to ask section in the help center for further details as to best approach asking a question. $\endgroup$ Jun 29 at 7:38

If I understand what you wrote, I believe that you are still respecting thermodynamics. However, I would suggest restructuring your system so there were less essences. Each essence could correspond to one way energy can be stored. I can only think of 4 examples right now.

Chemistry - energy stored in the bond holding atoms and molecules together
Light - energy stored in the electric and magnetic fields
Kinetic* - energy stored in the movement of matter
Gravity** - energy stored in the bending of space-time

*Heat, electricity, mechanics, and sound are all about the movement of matter through space, so they can be combined into a single essence.

**I suggest making mages attuned to this essence extremely rare and infamously unstable. After all, this would include all time-manipulating spells.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Thank you for this answer ! It already helps me a lot ! $\endgroup$ Jun 29 at 11:03

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