Implement assistance?

Hey there,

I was going to give this topic a significantly more inuendo laden title but i thought i should try to stay classy for my first post.
Everything i have seen about these events makes me drool with anticipation but given the high standards and quality on display i was hoping for some guidance around mages, impliments and combat.
I was looking at building a character as a mage who can get his hands dirty by taking mage armour and mage staff. The thing I want to get right is the look and usage of a staff.
When implements are talked about in the rules its stated they should be made up so they do not look like weapons (with some emphasis). However you can call a single point of damage so i guess my questions are:

Should mages be beating people to death with their implements? (im trying to minimise the innuendo i promise).
I can see how it would be potantially bad to take the magical device through which you are channeleing your mystical power and get it covered in the blood / brains / the lingering spirits of your fallen foes… However it seems many of the nation flavours suggest that their mages would be quite at home braining someone and offensive spells explicitly require an implement to be channelled through… I am wondering if I should be only using the staff for the casting of spells or if its ok to put it to more mundane uses such as beating barbarians to death and propping open doors.

How are people signifiying their implements?
I have a very simple plain wooden quarterstaff and not a huge amount of money so I would like to, ideally, use that weapon as a mage staff. However at the moment it looks like either 1) Something to bash peoples brains in (weapon) or 2) A tent pole / piece of miscellaneous building material (not very mystic). My interpretation of “not like a weapon” was that the implement should look like something mystic - something that clearly stands out as a focus for supernatural power - but thats only my take on things and i was curious how other people are dealing with this.
My other concern was that my usual “mystic it up” technique is to hang feathers / beads and other frotage to something until it is fetish-tastic. Unfortunately this would probably turn a perfectly safe LARP weapon immediately into a rather nasty cat-o-nine tails and i dont think anyone wants that. I have thought about using a decorated cloth sleeve in the middle where it is gripped but if anyone has any tips / suggestions about how they have “mysticed” their rod, staff or wand it would be great to hear them.

Im aware that aware that opinions of how things should look / be used may well be different depending on the nation in question so there may be no right / wrong answer however i want to make an effort to get this right so the more opinions you can throw at me the better really :slight_smile:

Mages routinely beat people to death with their implements; they can’t be used with the heroic skills (SHATTER, CLEAVE and STRIKEDOWN), but they’re perfectly good for doing damage. If you want to play a mage who’s uneasy about using this precision magical instrument to break bones, that’s a great addition to your roleplay, but it’s neither required nor particularly common.

You’re quite right that adding feathers and beads to the end is a terrible idea. If you don’t mind permanently defacing your staff, it’s not too hard to re-paint it with mystic sigils (acrylic paint mixed with latex forms a flexible paint which will be opaque after a few layers; don’t use metallic paints unless you’re sure they don’t have copper in). Some people have had success using facepaint to add runes, which isn’t permanent, but they tend to blur and fade fairly fast in my admittedly limited experience.

This being an aspirational game, I’d say your plain old quarterstaff is fine; you know it’s not ideal, and you’ve decided to spend your limited resources on improving other aspects of your kit, which is a perfectly legitimate decision if you ask me.

My mage character uses one of these as a rod implement:

https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/t1/s720x720/482709_544697472228236_1498185140_n.jpg

And quite happily beats enemies to death with it.

To be fair Chris, that looks like a rock on a stick… quite possibly the oldest weapon on the planet. :wink:

Finding a rod that doesn’t look like a rock-on-a-stick has been a bit of a challenge. Almost makes me want to learn Mage Staff: the traders have built some real beauties.

Firstly while there are characterisation reasons why you wouldn’t beat someone to death with your magic stick, most people with magic sticks if they are put into a position to beat a barbarian to death with their stick are either going to do it or run away. If you are taking Mage staff you are fundamentally paying two point to have a better weapon, I’d expect you to hit someone with it.

As for the whole weapon debate personally it’s does this evoke the idea that I’m a wizard, rather than a fighter? A wooden staff is the iconic trapping of the wizard, yes a wooden staff is also a weapon*, but if I see someone carrying a wooden staff the first association is wizard. That’s probably true of most people on the field. Now there is room to improve it, the magical rune route is a obvious one, but a wooden staff is the iconic wizards weapon. Personally I’d pick a colour to try to make it look like runes are carved into the wood.

*As mentioned most of the rods are basically maces.

As implements are unusable to inflict damage without the Magician/Use Staff skill I assume mages form some kind of intangible field of force around them such that they hit as hard as a mace or cut like a sword. Most battlemages tend to use an implement mostly as a martial close combat weapon, channelling spells through them only rarely to turn the tide at key moments.