Thaumaturgy and rituals



Thaumaturgy, like Necromancy, is a series of Paths. When a character first learns Thaumaturgy, he chooses a primary Path. Raising this Path costs (new dots x 7) experience points. The character can learn other Paths, but secondary Paths can never exceed the primary Path’s rating. Secondary Paths cost (new dots x 6) to raise.

The system to use any Thaumaturgical Path power is as follows:

Cost: 1 Vitae

Dice Pool: Resolve + Occult + Thaumaturgy (rat-ing in primary Path) – level of power being attempted

Action: Instant Roll Results:

Dramatic Failure: The character loses a dot of Willpower as the magic takes a toll on her mind.

Failure: The effect does not happen, and the Vitae point is still spent.

Success: The effect happens as described in the text.

Exceptional Success: Extra successes are usually their own reward. In some cases, an exceptional suc-cess indicates an increased duration or effect; these cases are noted below.

path of blood

The Path of Blood can be found on pp. 178-180 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

• A Taste of Blood: With a taste of the subject’s blood, the vampire learns the following information: Whether the subject is vampire, what clan he be-longs to (within the thaumaturge’s experience — if he’s never encountered the clan before, the infor-mation he gains is “new clan”), the subject’s Blood Potency, and whether the subject has committed diablerie in the last month.

•• Blood Rage: The thaumaturge must touch the target (this action is considered reflexive; see Touching an Opponent on p. 157 of the World of Darkness Rulebook) before using this power. The character can force the character to expend one point of Vitae per success, and may exceed the usual limits imposed by Blood Potency. The thaumaturge can force the target to spend Vitae on anything he could normally spend it on, including Physical Augmentation and counterfeiting life. Each success also imposes a –1 penalty on the target’s roll to resist frenzy for the rest of the scene.

••• Blood of Potency: The character raises his effective Blood Potency. Additional successes can be used to raise Blood Potency or to increase the duration by one hour: two successes on the roll can raise the character’s Blood Potency by one for two hours or by two for one hour (the first success in each category is “free,” provided the Thaumaturgy roll succeeds). Increasing Blood Potency increases the vampire’s Vitae pool and adds to resistance rolls for certain powers. It may also increase the amount of Vitae the character can expend in a turn. Finally, the character responds to other vampires differently with regards to the Predator’s Taint, based on his new effective Blood Potency. When the power wears off, any Vitae in addition to the character’s normal pool is lost.

•••• Theft of Vitae: Subtract the target’s

Defense from the roll in addition to the usual –4 penalty. Each success drains one point of Vitae from any visible target within 50 feet of the vampire. The blood erupts from the target’s mouth and nose and flies toward the vampire, who absorbs it into his hand or mouth. Used on a vampire, this can create a Vinculum.

••••• Cauldron of Blood: This power requires

that the vampire touch the target (see p. 157 of the World of Darkness Rulebook). The touch is a reflexive action. Subtract the target’s Stamina from


the spell, in addition to the usual –5 penalty. The character then boils one point of blood per success on the roll. Any success kills a mortal immediately; vampires suffer successes as aggravated damage.

lure of flaMes

This Path can be found on p. 180 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

The vampire creates fire anywhere in his line of sight. The amount of damage that this fire causes is listed on p. 180 of Vampire: The Masquerade. The character can “hold” fire in his hands, and then release it at any time, but once released it burns the spellcaster as along with anything else.

MoveMent of the Mind

This Path can be found on p. 181 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

The character can lift and manipulate items based on their weight, according to the chart on p. 181 of Vampire: Masquerade. Each success garners one turn of control. The player can make another control roll to maintain the spell, which does not require the expenditure of Vitae. At level three, the character can levitate and fly at her normal Speed. At level four, the character can throw objects at targets, inflicting +0B damage (the Storyteller may rule that throwing knives and other bladed objects inflict lethal damage).

the path of Conjuring

This Path can be found on p. 181 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

The character can conjure objects out of nothing. More successes indicate cosmetic improvement, but the object’s equipment bonus is always the standard for a normal example of the item in question. The vampire cannot summon anything larger than himself. • Summon the Simple Form: A simple object with no moving parts: a knife, a lead pipe, a wooden stake. The player must spend a Willpower point to maintain the item for each turn after the first (unless the character uses Permanency).

•• Permanency: The player spends three (one for using Thaumaturgy + two more) Vitae, and any object created with this Path remains in existence. This power still requires a Thaumaturgy roll, but if it fails only one Vitae is lost.

••• Magic of the Smith: The player spends five

Vitae (one for using Thaumaturgy + four more) to create complex items such as bicycles, guns and computers. These items are permanent once created. •••• Reverse Conjuration: The vampire can cancel other thaumaturgists’ conjurations. In addi-tion to the Vitae point, the player must expend a point of Willpower.

••••• Power Over Life: The thaumaturgist can create living creatures. The player must spend 10 Vi-tae (one for using Thaumaturgy + nine more). These creatures obey the vampire’s commands, but have no will otherwise (they must be commanded to eat and drink). They fade from existence in one week. hands of destruCtion

This Path can be found on p. 182 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

• Decay: The character must touch the target object. It loses one point of Durability per success, but cannot fall below Durability 0.

•• Gnarl Wood: The character can warp 50 pounds of wood per Vitae spent in using this power, subject to the usual limits imposed by Blood Potency. The character merely needs to see, not touch, the wood. The wood must be dead — the vampire can’t use this power on living trees. The vampire also can’t sculpt the wood; if he tries, it withers and cracks, becoming useless.

••• Acidic Touch: The character secretes acidic blood from her skin. She is immune to damage from her own acid, though her clothes and other objects she carries are not. One use of the acid is enough to burn through one point of Structure of a target object. Used offensively, the character can make one hand-to-hand attack per use of this power, and inflicts aggravated hand damage.

•••• Atrophy: The character can wither limbs.

This requires touching the target limb (p. 157 of the World of Darkness Rulebook), and the player subtracts the target’s Stamina from the Thaumaturgy roll in addition to the usual –4 penalty. Success cripples the limb, making it useless (which imposes either the Lame or One Arm Flaw on the target). This power is permanent when used on mortals, though powerful magic can repair the damage. Vam-pires can spend five Vitae to rejuvenate the limb.


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••••• Turn to Dust: The vampire ages the target by 10 years per success. The vampire must touch the target (making a reflexive touch attack), and the player subtracts the target’s Stamina from the Thaumaturgy roll in addition to the usual –5 penalty. Vampire are unaffected by this power. Aging a target beyond her natural lifespan kills the target instantly (the Storyteller makes the call as to how many successes is required to kill a given target). rituals

Rituals in Thaumaturgy function much like the rites of Crúac and Theban Sorcery. The vampire must have the Thaumaturgy Discipline (any Path) at a level equal to or higher than the ritual he is trying to perform.

Cost: 1 Willpower

Dice Pool: Intelligence + Occult + Thaumaturgy (primary Path)

Action: Extended. The number of successes required to activate a ritual is equal to the level of the ritual (so a level-three ritual requires three successes to enact). Each roll represents one turn of ritual casting. Note also that each point of damage suffered in a turn is a penalty to the next casting roll made for the character.

If a character fails to complete the ritual in time (such as by being sent into torpor before accumulat-ing enough successes) or decides to cancel the ritual before garnering enough successes to activate, the effect simply fails.

Roll Results:

Dramatic Failure: The ritual fails in some spec-tacular fashion. A ritual intended to damage a sub-ject inflicts its damage upon the caster, for example, while a ritual designed to store Vitae in an object depletes the caster of some amount of his own. Failure: No successes are added to the total.

Success: The ritual takes place as described.

Exceptional Success: The ritual takes place as described. In many cases, extra successes are their own reward, causing additional damage or conferring extra duration or capacity.

Defense of the Sacred Haven (Level-One

Thaumaturgy Ritual)

As described on p. 183 of Vampire: The Masquer-ade. This ritual requires 1 Vitae in addition to the Willpower point.

Wake with Evening’s Freshness (Level-One Thaumaturgy Ritual)

The thaumaturgist wakes automatically at the first sign of trouble during the day, and can ignore the Humanity roll to stay active (see p. 184 of Vampire: The Requiem) for two turns. The player must still spend one Vitae for the character to awaken.

Communicate with Kindred Sire (Level-One Thaumaturgy Ritual)

As described on pp. 183-184 of Vampire: The Masquerade. A vampire who belongs to a bloodline may use this ritual to communicate with his Avus as well as his sire.

Deflection of Wooden Doom (Level-One

Thaumaturgy Ritual)

As described on p. 184 of Vampire: The Mas-querade. Note that this ritual is slightly different than the Crúac ritual of the same name, in that it defends against only the first attempt to stake the vampire.

Devil’s Touch (Level-One Thaumaturgy Ritual)

The victim of this ritual must be carrying the enchanted coin on his person somewhere, which might require the vampire’s player to succeed on a Dexterity + Larceny roll to plant it on him. In any case, once afflicted with the curse, the victim suffers a –4 penalty to all Social rolls for the remainder of the night. This also applies to any attempt to use the Status Merit. This ritual does not work on supernatu-ral beings, though at the Storyteller’s discretion there might be a higher-level version that does.

Ward vs. Ghouls (Level-Two Thaumaturgy Ritual)

Once cast, this spell inflicts three points of lethal damage on any ghoul that touches the object. A ward can be placed on a bullet or other missile, but the vampire must ward each bullet separately. If the bullet hits, add three successes to the roll. If the bullet misses, the effort is wasted.

Principal Focus of Vitae Infusion (Level-Two Thaumaturgy Ritual)

This ritual is similar to the level-one Theban Sorcery ritual Vitae Reliquary, but note the dif-ferences: The Thaumaturgy ritual can be used on smaller objects, it only holds one point of Vitae, and the blood is not “neutral” but can be used to create a Vinculum.


Incorporeal Passage (Level-Three Thauma-turgy Ritual)

This ritual lasts until the vampire dispels it. Other than that, it works as described on p. 184 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

Pavis of Foul Presence (Level-Three Thau-maturgy Ritual)

As described on p. 184 of Vampire: The Masquer-ade, except that it works on the Majesty Discipline. Bone of Lies (Level-Four Thaumaturgy Ritual)

As described on pp. 184-185 of Vampire: The Masquerade.

Blood Contract (Level-Five Thaumaturgy Ritual)

Enforcement of the contract is left to the Sto-ryteller. If she wishes to be subtle about it, oath-breakers might suffer runs of horrible bad luck as long as they fail to uphold the contract (which might be represented by dice pool penalties). If she wishes to be more overt, demon hounds might manifest and rend the character’s undead flesh until he complies (use the dog statistics on p. 203 of the World of Darkness Rulebook).


Thaumaturgy and rituals

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