MERLIN’S USED HORSE LOT?
A Dwellings Variant for MAGIC REALM
by Bruce Degi
Now that Magic Realm has enchanted the pages of the General (Vol. 16, #4), it will just be a matter of time before loyal magic trippers flood the shire of Baltimore, with all sorts of fantastic variants for this gem. The possibilities are endless; the resulting complexities may be staggering. Before any TREMENDOUS variants wind up in the CHARGE box, I’d like to take a SWING at a NEGLIGIBLE variant: if it’s not a SMASH, feel free to DUCK.
THE DWELLINGS VARIANT
All of the Dwelling counters provided with the game have a Brown and a Grey side, but the original rules make nothing of it. Using these rules, the players will find more uses for the dwellings and hopefully, for the varied nature of these dwellings.
1. All Dwelling counters are set up at the beginning of the game BROWN side up. Dwellings that are Brown side up function exactly as stated in the original rules.
2. Dwellings can be ENCHANTED using the same procedure to enchant a tile (section 48). Enchanted dwellings are turned Grey side up.
2.1 The character doing the enchanting must be in the same clearing as the dwelling.
2.2 Only the dwelling is enchanted; the Tile is not enchanted due to this action.
2.3 All “normal” functions of the affected dwelling CEASE. Natives, weapons etc., (but not other characters) “disappear” into another world. They are “out of play” but will return intact when the dwelling is enchanted again.
2.31 Enchanted dwellings can be “turned back over” by another enchanting attempt, just like enchanted tiles.
2.32 The dwellings can be enchanted any number of times during the game.
3. Enchanted Dwellings have the following new characteristics:
3.1 The INN, when Grey side up, becomes a BLACKSMITH SHOP.
3.11 Any character can attempt to repair his DAMAGED ARMOR at the Blacksmith’s. Characters have two choices:
3.12 They can pay the local smithy to repair the armor. Repairs cost one half of the armor’s list price (rounded down). Each “R” phase spent at the Blacksmith’s will repair one piece of armor. Subtract the price paid from your recorded Gold.
3.13 They can attempt to repair the armor themselves. The smithy will provide an instruction book free of charge but will not help beyond that. If you select this option, pay no gold for each attempt but roll two dice. A “6” on either die means you’ve botched the repair attempt beyond hope, the piece of armor is now Destroyed. One can attempt one self repair for each “R” phase spent at the Blacksmith.
3.2 The HOUSE, when Grey side up, becomes JACQUE’S FUR TRADERS.
3.21 When playing this variant, monsters that are killed are not merely set aside until the next month. Whenever anyone of the monsters listed below is slain, the character can spend one “Alert” phase during the next turn to “skin” one monster .
3.22 A character with “pelts” can sell them to Jacque by spending one “R” phase at the FUR TRADERS. The character can sell one pelt per phase. Pelts are carried just like inactivated counters/treasures.
3.23 Characters who have pelts when the lunar month changes lose them to the Treasure set-upcard, they get nothing for them as they’ve rotted,
3.24 Jacque will pay the following, in Gold:
|Giant’s Bat Wings||
|Flying Dragon’s Wings||
|T. Serpent’s Skin||
|T. Spider’s Leg||
|T. Dragon’s Hide||
|T. Flying Dragon’s Wings||
3.3 The GUARD HOUSE, when Grey side up, becomes MERLIN’S USED HORSE LOT.
3.31 Any character who spends a “R” phase at the CAR LOT can trade in his Horse counter for a better one. Characters have two choices:
3.32 They can trade-in a horse at one-third of its value and then buy any other horse at list value. Merlin will conjure the desired horse from any available spot on the treasure set-up card, and exchange it for yours. The advantages here are that you do not have to find the proper natives, and you will pay only the list price.
3.33 You can do some old-fashioned “horse trading” with Merlin if you desire (instead of3.32). Merlin gets your horse. It is placed on the treasure set-up card on the spot that has the most horses of that type already. Merlin will conjure any other horse that you desire from the treasure set-up card, BUT you must roll two dice. If the high die is a “5” the horse is Lame: its carrying capacity is reduced one level and all MOVE times are increased one level. If the high die is a “6” the horse is a real lemon and dies the first phase that you move out of that clearing.
3.4 The CHAPEL, when Grey side up, becomes OUR LADY OF THE SHIRE HOSPITAL.
3.41 One “R” phase spent at the hospital returns all Fatigued AND Wounded counters of that character to play. It will also remove any Curse.
3.42 One full turn spent at the hospital will grant the character one roll on the WISH table. (Limit: one per month).
3.5 The L and S CAMPFIRES are not turned Grey side up when enchanted. Instead, the campfires are EXTINGUISHED.
3.51 Whenever any one of the campfires is extinguished, both are removed from the board (if both are on the board). Characters in the Campfire’s clearing are not affected, but any natives which are not hired are returned to the treasure set-up card.
3.52 Remove all of the “W” warning counters from the WOODS Tiles. Mix them (upside down) and replace them on the WOODS Tiles. The campfires have probably changed locations now and must be found all over again. When found, they are Brown side up and function normally.
3.53 The campfires can be extinguished any number of times during the game.
There you have it. As I warned, this is not the ultimate MAGIC REALM variant, but it does add some more possibilities and, I hope, some more fun. If MAGIC REALM isn’t a “wargame” it really doesn’t matter. MAGIC REALM is fun. Enjoy.