Questions tagged [magic]

For questions that have to do with magic, as opposed to science/technology. Remember to explain any limits.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
45
votes
31answers
9k views

How can I make humans NOT WANT to investigate how a supernatural ability works in an intelligent, non-human creature?

We've had a few questions where answers state, to a lesser or greater degree, "humans would investigate this ability to figure out how it works" in another creature with abilities not readily ...
45
votes
5answers
5k views

Would a demon be afforded civil rights?

Synopsis For reasons unimportant to the question all divine/infernal beings and deities took a hiatus from interacting with the earth in the dark ages. For reasons equally obscure they are back and ...
44
votes
15answers
13k views

How could elves survive without any fat cell in their body?

Have you ever seen a fat Elf? I haven't, and I think there's an unexpected reason. You see, Elves aren't really the best workers or at least working the land and cultivating food is not something ...
44
votes
9answers
5k views

Wondering what would happen if magic was constrained by Conservation of Energy

Would throwing a fireball leave a trail of frost in its wake? Would transmuting too much lead into gold cause a small meltdown? Would collecting enough power to cast a really big spell like causing ...
43
votes
15answers
9k views

Why is there only one wizard's guild?

The characteristics of a wizard: Spellcasting is very complicated and difficult - a high intelligence is critical to make a success of it. They spend many years studying to master the basics of their ...
43
votes
24answers
10k views

How do I keep my remains safe from being summoned as a skeleton?

Imagine a magical world similar to this question, where everyone uses skeletons as soldiers. There are mages running around searching graves for bones to summon them into skeletons. How do I keep ...
43
votes
33answers
6k views

Handling magical rune script copyright

I have a setting where there is an online shop that sells magic script, which sent via email. The magic in this world is activated via a runic script - similar to a program code. The problem is, I ...
43
votes
17answers
10k views

Zombie army is bad idea. But why actually?

In my custom fantasy world, raising the dead is really simple. Before the Great Act of Beautiful Death, raising a body and keeping it alive (undead?) for at least a week was a part of entrance exams ...
43
votes
18answers
5k views

How to fulfill a wish without causing a lot of troubles

A week ago, I was walking through an old district of Prague and found an old lamp. I tried to clean it by rubbing it... And you guessed that correctly: A genie appeared saying: "I will fulfill you one ...
42
votes
13answers
10k views

Multiple “keys,” multiple “doors”. Any “key” fits any “door” but a “key” can only be used once. How could such mechanic be described lore-wise?

I am working on a souls-like game and I would like to have an item that works like Fragrant Branch of Yore from DS2. I do not want to copy the concept of petrification from DS2 so while the item ...
42
votes
18answers
5k views

How do you defeat a time-stopping Dark Lord? [closed]

Gentlemen, I am sure you all know why I have gathered you here today. As we all know, the Dark Lord who has appeared on the borders of our beloved realm of Average Magical Medieval Setting commands ...
40
votes
12answers
7k views

Where could a person from the 14th century appear such that they would not notice modern technology for a week?

In this case, a person from a world similar to ours, at a time and technology roughly equivalent to our 14th century, but with magic. Through some odd spell, this person was teleported far away from ...
39
votes
17answers
8k views

Unreliable Magic - Is it worth it?

In my world, magic is unavoidably unreliable, for example: You have a puncture. You cast a spell to mend it and with equal probability either it is mended or another tire is punctured. You are ...
39
votes
26answers
7k views

What could make a remote village also have reasonably high traffic?

I've got a European medieval-themed world and my focus is everyday life in a small village (population of 300~500 people) in the mountains. I'm trying to stay away from action, adventure, violence, ...
39
votes
19answers
13k views

What can be used as a money in a high-fantasy magic world where noble metals are in practical use?

Imagine a high-fantasy magic world where magic has the place of a science. Noble/rare metals – such as silver, gold, platinum – have the ability to conduct magic energy, which is commonly used in all ...
39
votes
23answers
10k views

What kind of spells would magicians cast in combat if the fuel to magic is very expensive

In the story I’m working on, there is a strict ruleset on how magic works, one of the main points being it needs a “fuel” to work, and that “fuel” is VERY expensive. That being, most magicians use ...
39
votes
6answers
6k views

How many slaves do I need to keep my mountain palace supplied?

As the (reputedly) Mad Wizard-King of Jagatap, I would like to move my court to the remote fastness I recently finished building in the be-jungled hills of Nam. (Image from DudQuitter at DeviantArt) ...
39
votes
15answers
6k views

What would be favoured weapons and weapon styles of a four-armed human?

I have a race of humanoids with 4 hands. They are on average 7 feet tall and are as dexterous with each of their 4 hands as a human is dexterous with each of their arms. What kinds of weapons would ...
38
votes
24answers
12k views

Explanation as to why Male/Female Wizards have sexy bodies [closed]

I know that RPGs employ eye candy tactics to players of their preferred sex in order to entice the players into the game. Male Wizards are sexy and muscular. Female Wizards are sexy and have big ...
38
votes
19answers
3k views

A smaller price for a lesser faustian deal

We all know the classical trope of making a deal with the devil. The mortal applicant desires some worldly possession, knowledge, or power, and is willing to trade his own soul for it. Picture the ...
38
votes
16answers
10k views

How powerful would the church become if demons regularly visited Earth?

Setting: the walls between Dimensions have grown thin. This allows malevolent creatures, who for lack of a better term we shall call demons, to enter our world. Details: The demons are on ...
38
votes
16answers
6k views

Why do only clothes stay in an animal transformation?

I have a race in my world that has the ability to transform into animals at will. For reasons of practicality, the animals do not wear clothes and the clothes disappear during transformation. For ...
37
votes
19answers
9k views

Why would having more mages to conduct a spell not make it faster?

Orgone is the measure of a person's connection with the cosmos. It is the conduit through which the power of the cosmos flows, focused through a sorcerer's will. Ritual practicioners must draw on this ...
36
votes
20answers
8k views

Currency that can stand extreme temperatures

In one of my stories people often visit areas which have extreme temperatures. Humans can stand these temperatures due to spells that only work on living beings and some items of clothing. What ...
36
votes
19answers
13k views

Why would witches create warlocks when it makes them weaker?

In my story's world, witchcraft is a respected institution, with the most powerful practitioners being at the top echelons of society. Due to this, society traces its lineage through matrilineal lines....
36
votes
14answers
6k views

How to study magic that isn't objective

It has been said that any reasonable kind of magic would be possible to study and thus, would be like just another branch of science. That is, unless it makes absolutely no sense. I have created a ...
36
votes
7answers
7k views

What would be the effect of a giant magical fireball burning in the ocean?

Original prompt: "What would be the effect of a giant magic fireball burning in the ocean? Imagine there's a magical fireball that stays in one spot in the middle of the ocean and emits heat at a ...
35
votes
21answers
15k views

Are “Midas” swords useless for warfare?

Are swords, spears, and arrows that turn slain enemies into pure gold useful, in medieval combat, or are they useless aside from free money? Notes about the weapons: flesh wounds don't turn people ...
35
votes
18answers
7k views

With some exceptions, what makes the most powerful mage on the planet, not kill a merchant and steal his goods? [closed]

So I am the most powerful mage on the planet. A merchant offers me an artifact that is too expensive for me to buy. With some exceptions, what makes me, the most powerful mage on the planet, not just ...
35
votes
9answers
5k views

What species should be used for storage of human minds?

The business of mind storage became a profitable one, after the discovery of a magical process that allows the memories and personality of a living being to be transferred into another body. ...
34
votes
17answers
11k views

How practical would a zombie horde actually be in medieval setting

Given a fantasy setting with necromancers that can produce armies of undead, would such an army really be useful against a fully-equipped but smaller human force? Given that: Zombies in this fantasy ...
34
votes
21answers
5k views

My magic system “pays the price” by drawing its energy from the future: should that affect luck, heat, or life?

I'm developing a magic system that has as its weakness or limitation the fact that the energy used in the magic is drawn from the future. I'd like the system to experience a form of "resistance" such ...
33
votes
17answers
12k views

How to defend when attacked by an avian species?

Bird people are humanoid creatures with a wingspan of 4 meters, they are as tall as humans and the fittest of them weight 72 kilograms or slightly less, so they are quite lighter than the average ...
33
votes
25answers
9k views

Why would an army of angels with air superiority fight demons on the ground?

Angel society is militaristic with all individuals serving as warriors in some capacity. They are locked in an eternal battle against demons from hell over control of the mortal plane. Angels have ...
33
votes
15answers
10k views

Can the US military seize a country which has the ability to kill anyone based on the victim's name and face?

Setup: Earth, current day. US president decides to attack fictional country of Lalalistan, because terrorism/drugs/whatever. This attack has big support in NATO countries and Russia with China ...
33
votes
10answers
8k views

What would the proper shooting stance be for a recoil-free arm cannon?

Quick summary: it’s the modern day, and everyone can use magic. Some of that magic is of the variety that lets you launch energy blasts from your fists, similar to a Mega Man style arm cannon. You ...
33
votes
19answers
8k views

Why would a magic world be stuck in medieval times?

This is related to Must magic be tied to medieval tech?, but not the same. So the setup: There are two worlds, one is Earth, as it is now, with all its history. The other is a magic world, with an ...
33
votes
6answers
7k views

If a patch of desert were magically displaced to the middle of a forest, what would happen to the whole forest after certain periods of time?

First of all, I am tagging this with the magic because this phenomena is not a result of something natural. What would happen to a whole forest region if a patch of desert magically appeared at its ...
33
votes
6answers
4k views

Preventing Blackdamp in fantasy dungeons

Blackdamp is the condition where the breathable oxygen is removed from the air underground. Causing asphyxiation in humans and humanoids. Normally seen in modern day mines. The base area of the ...
33
votes
8answers
5k views

What would poverty be like if there was an infinite supply of food?

Taking into account a medieval-ish lifestyle, one of the most important things, I would imagine, correct me if I am wrong, is food. If you could eat food, you were probably also not poor. Now, ...
32
votes
23answers
6k views

What would be the ideal melee weapon made of “Phase Metal”?

Phase Metal is a material that is functionally similar to steel but can pass through its user (a single person bound to the metal when it is forged into a new form.) as if it didn't exist. Phase metal ...
32
votes
25answers
7k views

How to keep mages from taking over the world?

In my world anyone can use magic with the proper training. There are two levels of magic users: The first level is apprentice (someone with 4 to 8 years of magic education). They can move people and ...
32
votes
12answers
7k views

What should be done with the carbon when using magic to get oxygen from carbon dioxide?

So, I'm working on a flintlock fantasy series, and my protagonist is what's called an Arcane Engineer. This is someone who makes magical devices. Among those she has made there is a mask that let ...
32
votes
24answers
7k views

Reason why dimensional travelling would be restricted

Alternate dimensions/timelines are an important part of one of my settings, a modern fantasy. Magic is well known, and it is possible for objects to be enchanted by a powerful magic user to connect ...
32
votes
21answers
5k views

How would it make sense that spellbooks or grimoires teach only one wizard?

When I saw this other question about one somewhat illogical aspect of spellbooks in JRPG games I remembered another somewhat illogical aspect about JRPG spellbooks: How would it make sense that ...
32
votes
17answers
5k views

How do sorcerers attempt to prevent common people, or other sorcerers, from duplicating their spell scrolls?

Simply put, the world has magic, though it would be considered "science" by the world itself. This first section is going to provide a background for how the magic works. "Spells" can be cast via ...
32
votes
2answers
6k views

Can a dragon be electrocuted?

This question uses the European dragon model where dragons have semi-metallic scales (may or may not have actual metal scales), like to hoard gems, and possibly fly around in storms for the heck of it....
31
votes
13answers
5k views

What is the best way for a skeleton to impersonate human without using magic?

The classic skeleton that a necromancer has reanimated has gained independence and escaped from the group. Now, as a free individual, wants to know more about humans. Obviously, humanity sees it as a ...
31
votes
13answers
7k views

How can drunken, homicidal elves successfully conduct a wild hunt?

In this premise, the drow rule the fae-realm, an alternate dimension existing alongside the material plane. Every year on one night, the drow have an event known as "The Wild Hunt". During this night, ...
31
votes
15answers
10k views

Starships without computers?

Say I've got a sci-fi setting where I have one faction using relatively advanced technology (think The Expanse, or pre-Covenant war UNSC from Halo, fusion rockets and high-yield magnetic accelerator ...