For a long time now, I’ve associated the Primeval state of magic with the Illusion school for reasons that were difficult to explain. I think you can see the connection evident in even my earliest posts on the subject, even if I was more than a little scatterbrained and my evidence disassociated. The “Passion” resource helped tremendously.

Somewhere along the way, I realized that even with a comprehensive list of magic states, I would need an explanation for resources they provided, thematically and mechanically. Once I established the resources provided by each, and provided a clear line of reasoning for each, I would need to figure out common usage for each.

Starting with the basic connection I’ve had for like, a zillion years, between the Primeval state, the Passion resource, and Illusion magic, I drew connections for the other six states and resources rather quickly. It actually surprised me a bit.

Here’s how I organized them:

Natural (material) conjuration-creation
Primeval (passion) illusion
Elemental (pattern-time) transmutation
Empyreal (wisdom) divination
Ethereal (coalition) enchantment-charm
Sidereal (control-space) teleportation-summons
Spectral (challenge) evocation-shadow-metamagic

Each school of magic fundamentally “breaks” the laws set down by the state that represents them. Natural magic provides material resources and is broken or violated by the magic of conjuration, which represents the idea of “something from nothing.” Nature begets nature, and creation violates that principle. A wizard did it!

You’ll have to take my word for it, but each one of the magic schools violates the basic principles of its own state. It might not be immediately obvious just looking at the state (and some are more obvious than others) but makes plenty more sense once you look at the resources provided by each state.

One of the more difficult ones, Elemental/Time, didn’t gel with me until last night while I was staring at my reflection and I muttered something about time simply being a pattern of events that people decide to recognize with some degree of significance, combined with my pondering the strategy of Go the last few days.

I wouldn’t have made the connection between “Pattern” and “Time” a week ago. Once I did that though, I made the immediate connection with “Transmutation” which I’ve tried to reconcile with the Elemental state for a long, long time. It was nice to finally clear that one up – the Spectral and Ethereal states gave me the most trouble.

Now, while conjuration-creation “cheats” the Natural state by creating something from nothing, the schools of evocation, shadow, and metamagic “cheat” the Spectral state by canceling out the “hard work” of other magic types, copying them, or producing powerful effects at below-standard costs.

The Ethereal state wasn’t the slightest bit obvious, and I’m still not sure how the idea came to me. I asked myself, “how do you cheat cooperation,” and I answered, “by gaining the benefits of cooperation without paying the costs of working with people.” Then I thought of charm/dominate effects and the school of enchantment.

Now what’s left is to create the “baseline” effects of each, and figure out what the cost-to-effect ratio needs to be for each so that the majority of their iconic effects are available from “level one.” This is an exciting time. There are even more implications created by this system that are just waiting to be explored and discovered!