Return to DarkeMUD Home Page


DarkeMUD has a very complex system of spellcasting with many spells available to players through the variety of guilds. Here, we will discuss the entire spell system, including learning spells, casting spells, and other issues which may arise while spellcasting.

The system itself is quite simple on the surface. A player learns a spell similarly to training in a skill (development or "dev" points are spent), with a few differences discussed below. The player may learn the spell at power level 1 through 6, with each successive level being more costly. Upon casting a spell, the player may choose the power level at which to cast it, with a maximum of the level known by the player. The power level multiplies both the mp (magic point) cost of the spell and its effects, allowing the player to taylor the power of the spell to the situation. The effect of increasing spell power varies from spell to spell, but in general, the spell is harder to cast, more effective, and harder to resist at higher power.

Learning Spells

Spells are learned at the player's guild, obviously meaning you must join a guild before you can learn spells. With the permission of the guildmaster, you may learn spells at other guilds, at increased cost. Spells are learned by "power levels," which range from 1 to 6. You may find the development cost of a spell in its help (type 'help spell [spell-name]'). The cost of training a spell is the development cost times the level you wish to attain. If you have developed it once already at your level, the cost is equal to the fast development cost times the level. If you wish to train more than twice in a level, the cost is cumulative. For example, the spell 'cure light wounds' has a development cost of 7 and a fast development cost of 25.

Spell level (*) Cost in devs
-  to 1 1 * devcost
1 to 2 2 * devcost
2 to 3 3 * devcost
4 to 5 4 * devcost
4 to 5 5 * devcost
5 to 6 6 * devcost

Spell Casting Skills

The spell power level only determines the maximum power level at which you may cast a spell and has nothing to do with your chance of success in spellcasting. This is determined by the spell casting SKILL. To see which skill is used to cast any particular spell, type 'help spell [spell-name]'. If you do not have the necessary skill, you will not be able to cast a spell.

At its most basic level, the skill in casting represents a percent chance that you will succeed in casting at any particular time. Note that you have a 5% chance of fumbling a spell REGARDLESS of your skill. See below for discussion of spell fumbles. Spell casting skills are trained similarly to any other skill and are usually quite costly.

Fumbling a Spell

Regardless of your casting chance, there is a 5% chance of fumbling any spell on casting. The effects of the fumble vary with the spell itself...combat spells go off at a random target, area spells hit people in your party by accident, heal spells harm instead, etc. Basically this is here to keep you on your toes and to counterbalance the power of spellcasting guilds against more combat-oriented guilds.

Moon Magi (?removed?)

The Moon Mage guild is unique in that they have access to most spells on the mud at base or slightly increased cost. They, however, suffer an important disadvantage. Every spell in DarkeMUD is linked to one of the three moons: Warzau (red, governs combat and necromancy), Ankh (blue, governs healing and protection), and Luna (green, governs summoning and other sorceries). If you wish to see what moon is linked to a particular spell, type 'help spell [spell-name]'.

If the moon linked to a spell you wish to cast is full, you receive bonuses to casting, and the mp cost is reduced. If the moon is waxing or waning, you receive almost no modification. However, if the moon is new (not visible), you receive serious penalties to casting, and mp cost is almost DOUBLED! Therefore, moon magi may only use certain colleges of magic at certain times. Fortunately, most are competent astronomers, and can divine the phases of the moons even during the daytime.

Casting Spells

Casting spells is accomplished by using the 'cast' command (see 'help cast'). While casting the spell, you supply the target (if necessary) and the power level. Note that you cannot cast a spell at a power level higher than the one at which you know it. For an example, if you want to cast the 'magic missile' spell at a turkey at power level 4, you would do this:

cast *4 magic missile at turkey

After typing the cast command, you will have to wait a number of 2-second turns equal to the casting time of the spell until it goes off. Except as noted below, everyone in the room will be able to see what you are casting, and some sorcerers may be able to tell WHAT SPELL you are casting as well. If you are in combat, you cannot strike when you are casting. Once the spell goes off, the effects (whatever they may be) are resolved. If you fail the spell, you still lose the magic points (mp) equal to the power of the spell times the base mp cost. You cannot, of course, cast a spell if you have insufficient mp. Note also, that if you move while you are in the middle of casting a spell, the spell is interrupted, and you suffer no loss of mp.

Silent Casting and Move While Casting

If you know a casting skill for a particular spell at 80% or more, you may cast that spell "silently." When you begin casting a spell, only sorcerers with the "spell sense" skill will be able to tell if you are casting. Others will be completely blind to the casting, allowing you to surprise them!

If you know a casting skill for a particular spell at 95% or more, you may move while casting. Basically, after you begin casting a spell, you may move freely about until the spell goes off without interrupting the spell. If you are creative enough, you can figure out several ways to exploit this fact.

Resisting a Spell

Certain (in fact, most) spells may be resisted. In some cases, resisting a spell means that you suffer no effects at all, while in some cases, the effects are merely reduced. The chance of resisting a spell depends on the target's stats. Higher constitution, intelligence, and wisdom help particularly.

That's It!

Well, that's the spell system. Hope you enjoy it. Hop on over to the post office and mail MacTORG if you think anything was left out, and use the idea command for suggestions. Thanx!