I've been working on something of my own little fantasy universe, where I can write stories and whatnot without worrying about whether or not they fit into an already established universe (like the Forgotten Realms, for example).
Now, I think I have a pretty good outline of the world, and plan to expand on it as I write stories and all that fun stuff. One thing I wanted to make sure I understood completely, however, was how the magic worked. I wanted this to be very concrete, because I often see magic used as a scapegoat for plotholes, or the creator of plotholes, in other stories, and it drives me up the wall.
"Well, because... Magic!" always felt so lazy to me.
I won't bore you all with the specifics (unless you want me to
), but basically, magic is very restrictive in what it can and cannot do. For example, magic can NOT alter time in any way. In this world, time is as bendable as it is in the real world. Magic CAN be shot from someone's fingertips in the form of a fireball, but it's not an instant thing. It requires a chant, and specific hand movements. A such, a wizard can't just disappear into thin air in the blink of an eye. They need to channel the mana through a set of very specific movements and vocal commands.
Magic flows through the air, and in order for someone to cast a spell, they need to allow the magic to flow into their bodies. As such, wearing big, thick armour will get in the way of that. So, anyone wishing to cast a spell will have to be mindful of what they wear, and whether or not the mana can properly reach their bodies. For example, the common mage robes work great, as the mana can easily sift through the cloth. Plate armour, however, would obviously make it extremely difficult for mana to reach the caster's skin.
Magic is divided into six different schools (elemental, thaumaturgy, alteration, mysticism, conjuration, and necromancy), each of which require a certain kind of chant to draw the mana from the pools. As such, most wizards only focus on one school, rather than waste their lives only being able to master minor spells from each school.
There's a lot more, such as how enchantment works, and how religious folk cast spells, but the main idea here is to restrict magic, but also make it a very powerful tool. I don't want people in this world to be able to wear armour made of some otherworldly metal from head to toe, and run into battle swinging a battleaxe in one hand and shooting fireballs from the other (*cough*Skyrim*cough*). I do, however, want magic to have a presence in a medieval-esque world without making it control how every little thing works.
It's a work-in-progress, and I'm not claiming it to be the perfect model for magic. That's why I made this thread.
Perhaps there are people out there who feel as though people SHOULD be able to wear otherworldly metal armour from head to toe, and run into battle flailing an axe and fireballs. It is fantasy, after all.
I want to see how other people think magic should work, or how they make it work in their own made-up worlds. Do you like the D&D model? TES? Or perhaps you prefer there to be little to no magic whatsoever? I'm interested in hearing what everyone else's opinions are, as I know from personal experience that the idea behind magic differs drastically from person to person.