Wonder Purchasing Guide

When purchasing one or more wonder (generally in Character Generation), one has to spend a certain number of background dots into the Wonder background. But since Wonders have a sliding scale of costs down from the cheapest Gadget to the most powerful Device, one only calculates that cost at the very last step.

Instead of background dots, most wonders are costed in “points.” These points are not freebies. These points are not experience points. These points are a Wonder-specific point system. When buying wonders, one needs to figure out its point cost, add up all the points for all the wonders desired, and use that total to look up the cost in background dots.

The final cost may be found on Mage 20th page 328:

    ⚫️⚪️⚪️⚪️⚪️: 1-3 points
    ⚫️⚫️⚪️⚪️⚪️: 4-6 points
    ⚫️⚫️⚫️⚪️⚪️: 7-9 points
    ⚫️⚫️⚫️⚫️⚪️: 10-12 points
    ⚫️⚫️⚫️⚫️⚫️: 13-15 points

Trinkets

Trinkets are not wonders. They are mundane items that a Mage has augmented with Magick to be superior, but still in a mundane way. They generally cannot be purchased.

Charms and Gadgets

Charms and Gadgets are one-use items that come in batches. To calculate the cost to purchase a Charm, first identify which and how many dots of all Spheres are required to generate the Charm’s effect.

For example, to build a Thermal Detonator, one would require Forces 3 and Prime 2.

Next, take the highest sphere and divide by 2, rounding up. Add one for each additional sphere used. That is the point cost of the charm. The number of copies you get is equal to the highest sphere of the effect.

For example, our Thermal Detonator would cost 2 (3 divided by 2, rounded up) points for Forces 3, plus 1 for Prime, for a total of 3 points. The purchase would come with 3 of them.

Finally, the point cost may be adjusted up or down with features and flaws.

Artifacts and Inventions

Artifacts and Inventions allow a mage to use an effect prepared by another mage, regardless of spheres known. Again we start by identifying which and how many dots of all Spheres are required to generate the Artifact’s effect.

For example, to build a portable Voidcast Device (Convention Book: Void Engineers page 87), one might need Correspondence 4 and Dimensional Science 3.

Next, take the highest sphere, then add one for each additional sphere used. That is the point cost of the artifact.

For example, our Voidcast Device would cost 4 points for Corrrespondence, plus 1 for Dimensional Science, for a total of 5 points.

Finally, the point cost may be adjusted up or down with features and flaws.

Talismans and Devices

Talismans and Devices are powerful objects which possess their own Arete scores, and can produce effects even when used by an unawakened person. We start by identifying the number of effects it has, and then for each effect identify which and how many dots of all Spheres are required to generate the Artifact’s effect.

For example, to build a Crown of Telepathy that works from any range, one might need Mind 3, Correspondence 3.

Next, take the highest sphere, then add one for each additional sphere used. That is the point cost of the effect. Double that cost if the effect is continuous

For example, our Crown of Telepathy would cost 3 points for Mind 3, plus one for Correspondence, for a total of 4. But the effect is continuous, so the cost becomes 8 points.

After summing the point costs of the effects, the Arete and Quintessence scores must be determined. The base Arete score of the object is equal to its highest sphere score in any effect, which is also its base Quintessence capacity. Additional Arete dots may be purchased for 3 points each. Each point of Arete added adds 5 to the object’s Quintessence capacity.

The number of effects a wonder has is limited to its Arete score. Quintessence is vital as quintessence determines how much Paradox the Talisman may carry before it is destroyed.

Finally, the point cost may be adjusted up or down with features and flaws. It is at this time the Talisman’s activation roll will be determined, whether mystickal or technomantic.

Primers, Grimoires, and Principiae

These do not use the point cost system. Instead they have a flat background dot value, with the number of background dots equalling the “rank” of the Grimoire. That rank is increased by one for each additional ability, sphere, or Arete support added. The mechanics are then specified in Book of Secrets, page 143-144.

A Primer is costed as a Rank 1 Grimoire.

Periapts and Matrices

These do not use the point cost system. Instead they have a flat background dot value, with the number of background dots determining the storage capacity of the Periapt. The mechanics are specified in Book of Secrets, page 145-146.

Fetishes and Talens

Fetishes and Talens may be purchased from the Werewolf or Mage books, with no custom Fetishes or Talens allowed. The costs are per the books. When a Werewolf book item is purchased, directly convert the Fetish dot value to the Wonder dot value.

Relics and Enhancements

Relics will be costed as Enhancements, Mage 20th page 313. The “points” values for Enhancements applying the same as above for Talismans and Devices. Though Enhancement or Relic freebie costs are doubled, because Enhancement is a “$” double cost background.