[V.7/17:49] Peti: New messages appear on the top (so this is the last one).
[V.7/16:14] Peti: Everything else is manual. You see that notepad with our names in it? You can record there what's happening and also plan your actions (we have different notepads, so I cannot see what you write). Just remember to save it :).
[V.7/16:13] Emó: Right. One last question: what about our health? The monsters? The effect of spells?
[V.7/16:12] Peti: I've clicked on Show, so it should turn brown, right?
[V.7/15:11] Emó: Okay, how about this one?
[V.7/12:18] Peti: As you can see, your hidden messages are shown in magenta - when the other player looks at them, they turn brown. Send me some hidden message!
[V.7/05:13] Emó: Let's try it: my first move is W W!
[V.7/12:18] Peti: Of course! Just place the part you want to hide between curly brackets. It looks like this:
[V.7/05:13] Emó: But I don't want you to see my moves! Can I hide them?
[V.7/02:01] Peti: Just write here what you want to do. There is a refresh button to see if the other player has done something.
[V.6/17:23] Emó: So how can we play?
[V.6/11:10] Peti: This is a trivial server for playing Spellcaster. For convenience, all the rules are at the bottom of this page.
Spells in Forward Order
C-D-P-W Dispel magic P-S-D-F Charm person
C-S-W-W-S Summon elemental P-S-F-W Summon ogre
C-(w Magic mirror P-W-P-F-S-S-S-D Finger of death
D-F-F-D-D Lightning bolt P-W-P-W-W-C Haste
D-F-P-W Cure heavy wounds S-D Missile
D-F-W Cure light wounds S-F-W Summon goblin
D-P-P Amnesia S-P-F Anti-spell
D-S-F Confusion S-P-F-P-S-D-W Permanency
D-S-F-F-F-C Disease S-P-P-C Time stop
D-W-F-F-(d Blindness S-S-F-P Resist cold
D-W-S-S-S-P Delayed effect S-W-D Fear
D-W-W-F-W-C Raise dead S-W-W-C Fire storm
D-W-W-F-W-D Poison W-D-D-C + Lightning bolt
F-F-F Paralysis W-F-P Cause light wounds
F-P-S-F-W Summon troll W-F-P-S-F-W Summon giant
F-S-S-D-D Fireball W-P-F-D Cause heavy wounds
P Shield W-P-P Counter-spell
(p ! Surrender W-S-S-C Ice storm
P-D-W-P Remove enchantment W-W-F-P Resist heat
P-P-(w-(s Invisibility W-W-P Protection from evil
P-S-D-D Charm monster W-W-S Counter-spell
! This is not a spell
+ Each wizard may use this spell once per battle, then the gestures have no
Spells in Reverse Order
(read your last few gestures backwards to see if you've made a spell)
C-D-D-W + Lightning bolt (p ! Surrender
C-F-F-F-S-D Disease P-F-S-S Resist cold
C-P-P-S Time Stop P-F-W Cause Light wounds
C-S-S-W Ice storm P-F-W-W Resist heat
C-W-F-W-W-D Raise dead P-P-D Amnesia
C-W-W-P-W-P Haste P-P-W Counter spell
C-W-W-S Fire storm P-S-S-S-W-D Delayed effect
D-D-F-F-D Lightning bolt P-W-D-P Remove enchantment
D-D-S-P Charm monster P-W-W Protection from evil
D-D-S-S-F Fireball (s-(w-P-P Invisibility
(d-F-F-W-D Blindness S-W-W Counter-spell
D-F-P-W Cause heavy wounds S-W-W-S-C Summon elemental
D-S Missile (w-C Magic mirror
D-S-S-S-F-P-W-P Finger of death W-D-S-P-F-P-S Permanency
D-W-F-W-W-D Poison W-F-D Cure light wounds
D-W-S Fear W-F-S Summon goblin
F-D-S-P Charm person W-F-S-P Summon ogre
F-F-F Paralysis W-F-S-P-F Summon troll
F-P-S Anti-spell W-F-S-P-F-W Summon giant
F-S-D Confusion W-D-D-C Dispel magic
P Shield W-P-F-D Cure heavy wounds
Waving Hands from /Duel Purpose/
A game by Richard Bartle.
A number of years ago, Richard Bartle published a zine called _Sauce of
the Nile_. One feature I particularly liked was the rules for new games
which he produced. One game appealed to me more than the others but it
never seemed to achieve the fame it deserved. Since then Richard has
rewritten some of its rules and has tried to have it produced
commercially but, as his proposed publishers have been using delaying
tactics for some time now, he has given me permission to reprint the
game. The original name of the game was Spellbinder but, as that name
has been used in a commercial game since Richard thought of it, he told
me to think up some other name. The game is a rarity as it can be
classed as a *fairy game* which is totally dependent upon skill!
This is a game concerning the imaginary conflict between two powerful
wizards in a duel of sorcery. The two opponents perform magical gestures
with their hands to create their supernatural weapons - spells. Some
spells are so potent as to be able to blind a man, call forth terrifying
creatures, or even kill the unfortunate victim instantly. Consequently,
each wizard must rely on his own cunning to be able to time enough
defensive spells to avoid the brunt of his adversary's attack, yet
deliver sufficient offensive spells of his own to crack the magical
armour of his opponent, and kill the wizard outright.
The game is an attempt to capture the spirit of such a battle in as
simple yet exciting way as possible. The only equipment needed is
pencil, paper and opponent. Time taken varies between 15 - 30 minutes.
The inventor wishes to state that he has never been involved in a
magical duel but would be interested to discover how realistic the game
is for those who have been involved in such a bout.
Each turn both player's will write down in secret the directions for
their wizards and the monsters under their wizards control. After both
players have written their directions for this turn, the moves are
revealed at the same time and dealt with as if the actions specified
therein occur simultaneously. Certain spells may alter these
circumstances. For example, you don't get to see all of your opponent's
moves if their wizard is invisible.
Each turn a player's wizard can either gesture with their hands to weave
part of a spell, stab with their knife, or do nothing. They use both
hands and each hand can act independently or in concord with the other.
Monsters will obey their master's commands exactly. Monster's may change
hands (as it were) as a result of enchantment. From that point on the
monster's attacks are directed by the new master. Monsters may make a
single attack each turn against a target chosen by their master or they
may spend the turn doing nothing. Monsters may attack on the turn in
which they are summoned.
Monsters are untrained, unintelligent creatures and can neither gesture
nor cast spells. Players personally acquainted with monsters who wish to
vouch for their ability to cast spells are requested to keep quiet.
Spells are created by strings of gestures made with the hands. There are
five single-handed gestures:
* the wiggled fingers (F)
* the proferred palm (P)
* the snap (S)
* the wave (W)
* the digit pointing (D)
There is one two-handed gesture: the clap (C). Both hands must be
specified as clapping in the same turn for this gesture to be valid.
There also two non-gestures:
* stab (stab)
* nothing ( )
The abbreviation for each gesture (or non-gesture) is used when
specifing directions for the turn.
Spells are cast using an ordered series of gestures. A list of spells
and the gestures used to cast them is given in the final section. For
example, three wiggling finger gestures on consecutive turns (noted as
F-F-F) evokes a *paralysis* spell. The uniqueness of the game, however,
is that a single gesture in more than one series and, hence, can be used
to cast more than one spell. Gestures may be used in multiple series
* the gestures have been made in the correct sequence without
* no more than one spell is created per gesture
* all gestures for one spell are made with the same hand
For instance, the left hand could cast the F-F-F above. In the following
four turns the left hand could gesture (S-S-D-D) to finish off a
*fireball* spell since the last five gestures would then be (F-S-S-D-D).
Another alternative is to simply perform another (F) for a second
*paralysis* spell, as the last three gestures are still (F-F-F). If
spells are used in a wise manner and frequently overlap, the overall
number of gestures needed to cast them can be cut dramatically.
If a gesture can be construed to create two or more spells then the
caster chooses which one to cast. For example, the last two gestures of
a *finger of death* are the same as *missile*, yet only on odd occasions
would the latter spell be chosen in preference to the former.
Another example of the one-spell-per-gesture concept is the following:
Right hand: P P W S Last 4 gestures form *invisibility*
Left hand: W W W S Last 3 gestures form *counter-spell*
The trouble here is the *invisibility* spell needs both hands to perform
certain gestures. However, since the final S of the left hand cannot be
used to cast two spells, it is clear that a choice must be made between
the W-W-S of the *counter-spell* and the P-P-(w-(s of the
*invisibility*. Here and in the rest of the document an open
parenthesis, followed by a lowercase letter, denotes a gesture to be
performed with /both hands/ simultaneously. E.g. (w denotes a W by each
If the caster completes a series that casts a spell, intentionally or
unintentionally, the spell must be cast. Most of these are shot off to
nowhere if not required but some cannot be easily discarded. For example
*fire storm* gets you no matter where it is released. Note also that
some of the larger spells have smaller ones incorporated within their
All spells and monsters need a target, someone or something to be the
victim. Usually the target is obvious. Normally enchantments and
damaging spells are cast at on your opponent's wizard, whereas
protection and summonning spells are cast on your wizard. However, if
your target is not the usual one, it must be noted along with the
gestures. For example, you may wish to cast a *counter-spell* on your
own monster to stop a *charm monster* spell from making it attack you.
The target need not exist at the time the gestures are made. "The
elemental he's about to create" is a valid target but if it still
doesn't exist when you actually cast the spell then the spell is
discarded (but, once again, recall that certain spells /cannot/ be
discarded). Monsters will usually attack their master's opponent but if
the target is different, e.g. another monster, then it must be written
down along with the monster's action.
Spells can be aborted at any point during their development simply by
performing a gesture which breaks up the series for that spell. There is
no penalty, save having wasted some time. Note that no spells contain
*stab* or *nothing*. Also note that nonsense (Zen?)( gestures such as (C
with just one hand are considered the same as *nothing* (which is a
fairly Zenlike concept, in and of itself). Consequently, after one of
these options is taken, all spells must start from scratch. Note also
that wizards carry only one dagger and so cannot stab with both hands at
the same time. Wizards can, however, change hands for stabbing without
wasting time. Such are the disadvantages of physical violence.
Certain spells cancel one another if they take effect simultaneously. An
obvious example is *finger of death* and *raise dead*. Cancellation
occurs when the subjects of the spells concerned are the same, although
there are some of the heat versus cold variety which don't care who is
the subject. Most other spells which cancel harmlessly are contradictory
enchantments (e.g. a wizard cannot both repeat last turn's gestures and
give a random gesture with one hand when *amnesia* and *confusion* are
cast at the same time). If two spells seem to cancel yet are not
mentioned explicitly in the section on spells, use your common sense and
you can't go far wrong (henceforth this will be known as the *Cosmic
Since spells detonate simultaneously, there is occasionally confusion
over spells which don't cancel yet which seem to depend on which
happened first. The best example is when a monster is created and, on
the same turn, hit by a *fireball*, or something else sufficient to kill
it. Since both are simultaneous, the monster will attack that turn
whilst being destroyed. There are some examples explicitly mentioned in
the final section. For example, ice elementals in an *ice storm* and
*counter-spell* or *dispel magic* versus all other spells.
Another seeming conflict occurs when a target that is resistant to fire
has both a *remove enchantment* and *fireball* cast on them. The
enchantment is removed as the fireball explodes (since they are
simultaneous) hence the poor victim is fried. If the target were not
resistant to fire and was hit by a *resist fire* and *fireball* then
they would start to resist fire just as the fireball exploded and be saved.
Before the battle commences, the referee casts a *dispel magic* followed
by an *anti-spell* at each of the wizards so they cannot commence
gesturing prematurely in order to nearly finish a spell when they start
the battle. For the same reason, being made resistant to fire in your
last battle doesn't do you any good in the next.
Each wizard can sustain fourteen points of damage but dies when fifteen
or more points of damage are done. The surviving wizard (if any) is
declared the winner. Simultaneous death is a posthumous draw. Damage to
wizards and monsters is cumulative (so you don't have to do it all in
one go!). Dead monsters take no further part in the game.
Wizards may also choose to surrender. This is not a spell, but a pair of
P gestures made by both hands at the same time signals your surrender.
See the final section for details.
Below you will find a list of spells (plus *surrender*), what they do,
how long they last, and the series of gestures used to cast them.
In the notation used for gesture series, upper case letters are used as
abbreviations except when two simultaneous single-handed gestures are
required. In those cases an open bracket followed by a lower case letter
(e.g. (w ) will be used instead.
Finally there is a short list of spells in forward and reverse order,
intended for use as a reference sheet for players during the battle. To
see if a spell has been cast, look up in the reverse section the last
gesture and follow back.
gesture P. This spell protects the subject from all attacks from
monsters (that is, creatures created by a summonning spell), from
missile spells, and from stabs by wizards. The shield will block any
number of such attacks but lasts for only one round. The shield protects
the subject on the turn in which it is cast.
gestures P-D-W-P. Terminates the effects of all *Enchantment Spells*
that have been cast on the subject including those that are cast on the
subject at the same time as the *remove enchantment*. Effects which have
already passed are not reversed. For example, the victim of a
*blindness* spell would not be able to see what their opponent's
gestures were on the the *blindness* is removed. Note that all
enchantments are removed and the caster may not pick and choose. *Remove
enchantment* also destroys any monster upon which it is cast, although
the monster can attack in that turn. Wizards suffer no adverse effects
from this spell, aside from the removal of their enchantments.
gestures C-(w. Any spell cast on a subject protected by this spell is
reflected back upon the caster of that spell. The *magic mirror*
protects only during the turn in which it was cast. The protection
includes spells like *missile* and *lightning bolt* but does not include
attacks by monsters or stabs from wizards.
The mirror does not affect spells which are cast upon oneself (e.g.
spells from this section and the *Summonning* section). The mirror is
countered totally if either a *counter-spell* or *dispel magic* are cast
on the subject in the same turn as the mirror. The mirror has no effect
on spells which affect more than one person (such as *fire storm*). Two
mirrors cast at one subject simultaneously combine to form a single mirror.
gestures W-P-P *or* W-W-S. Any other spell cast upon the subject in the
same turn has no effect. In the case of blanket spells, which affect
more than one person, the subject of the *counter-spell* alone is protected.
For example, a *fire storm* spell could kill off a monster but not if a
*counter-spell* were cast on the monster in the same turn. Everyone else
would be affected as usual by the *fire storm* unless they had their own
protection. The *counter-spell* will cancel all the spells cast at the
subject for that turn (including *remove enchantment* and *magic
mirror*) except *dispel magic* and *finger of death*. It will combine
with another spell of its own type for the same effect as if it were
alone. The *counter-spell* will also act as a *shield* on the final
gesture in addition to its other properties, but the shield effect is on
the same subject as its other effect.
gestures C-D-P-W. This spell acts as a combination of *counter-spell*
and *remove enchantment*, but its effects are universal rather than
limited to the subject of the spell. It will stop any spell cast in the
same turn from working (apart from another dispel magic spell which
combines with it for the same result), and will remove all enchantments
from all beings before they have effect. In addition, all monsters are
destroyed although they can attack that turn. *Counter-spells* and
*magic mirrors* have no effect. The spell will not work on stabs or
surrenders. As with a *counter-spell* it also acts as a *shield* for its
gestures D-W-W-F-W-C. The subject of this spell is usually a
recently-dead (not yet decomposing) human corpse though it may be used
on a dead monster. When the spell is cast, life returns to the corpse
and all damage is cured. All enchantments are also removed (as per the
spell) so any *diseases* or *poisons* will be neutralized and all other
enchantments removed. If swords, knives, or other implements of
destruction still remain in the corpse when it is raised, they will of
course cause it damage as usual. The subject will be able to act
normally immediately after the spell is cast. On the turn a monster is
raised it may attack. Wizards may begin gesturing on the turn following
their return from the dead.
This is the only spell which affects corpses. It therefore cannot be
stopped by a *counter-spell*. A *dispel magic* spell will prevent its
effect, since *dispel magic* affects all spells no matter what their
If the spell is cast on a live individual, the effect is that of a *cure
light wounds* recovering five points of damage, or as many as have been
sustained if less than five. Note that any diseases the live subject
might have are /not/ cured.
Cure Light Wounds
gestures D-F-W. If the subject has received damage then he is cured by
one point as if that point had not been inflicted.
Thus, for example, if a wizard was at ten points of damage and was hit
simultaneously by a *cure light wounds* and a *lightning bolt* he would
finish that turn on fourteen points rather than fifteen (or nine if
there had been no *lightning bolt*).
The effect is not removed by a *dispel magic* or *remove enchantment*.
Cure Heavy Wounds
gestures D-F-P-W. This spell is similar to *cure light wounds* in effect
but two points of damage are cured. Note that only one point is cured if
only one point of damage has been sustained and the spell has no effect
if the subject is completely undamaged.
This spell will also cure any diseases the subject might have at the time.
gestures S-F-W. This spell creates a goblin under the control of the
subject upon whom the spell is cast (or if cast on a monster, the
subject monster's /controller/, even if the monster later dies or
changes loyalty). The goblin can attack immediately and its victim can
be any any wizard or other monster the controller desires, stating which
at the time he writes his gestures. It does one point of damage to its
victim per turn and is destroyed after one point of damage is inflicted
The summoning spell cannot be cast at an elemental, and if cast at
something which doesn't exist, the spell has no effect.
gestures P-S-F-W. This spell is the same as *summon goblin* but the ogre
created inflicts and is destroyed by two points of damage rather than one.
gestures F-P-S-F-W. This spell is the same as *summon goblin* but the
troll created inflicts and is destroyed by three points of damage rather
gestures W-F-P-S-F-W. This spell is the same as *summon goblin* but the
giant created inflicts and is destroyed by four points of damage rather
gestures C-S-W-W-S. This spell creates either a fire elemental or an ice
elemental at the discretion of the person upon whom the spell is cast
after he has seen all the gestures made that turn. Elementals must be
cast at someone and cannot be "shot off" harmlessly at some inanimate
The elemental will, for that turn and until destroyed, attack everyone
who is not resistant to its type (heat or cold), causing three points of
damage per turn. The elemental takes three points of damage to be killed
but may be destroyed by spells of the opposite type (e.g. *fire storm*,
*resist cold* or *fireball* will kill an ice elemental), and will also
neutralize the canceling spell. Elementals will not attack on the turn
they are destroyed by such a spell. An elemental will also be engulfed
and destroyed by a storm of its own type but, in such an event, the
storm is not neutralized although the elemental still does not attack in
that turn. Two elementals of the opposite type will also destroy each
other before attacking, and two of the same type will join together to
form a single elemental of normal strength. Note that only wizards or
monsters resistant to the type of elemental, or who are casting a spell
which has the effect of a *shield* do not get attacked by the elemental.
Casting a *fireball* upon yourself when being attacked by an ice
elemental is no defence! (Cast it at the elemental...)
gestures S-D. This spell creates a material object of hard substance
which is hurled towards the subject of the spell and causes him one
point of damage. The spell is thwarted by a *shield* in addition to the
usual *counter-spell*, *dispel magic* and *magic mirror* (the latter
causing it to hit whoever cast it instead).
Finger of Death
gestures P-W-P-F-S-S-S-D. Kills the subject stone dead. This spell is so
powerful that it is unaffected by a *counter-spell* although a *dispel
magic* spell cast upon the final gesture will stop it. The usual way to
prevent being harmed by this spell is to disrupt it during casting
using, for example, an *anti-spell*.
gestures D-F-F-D-D *or* W-D-D-C. The subject of this spell is hit by a
bolt of lightning and sustains five points of damage. Resistance to heat
or cold is irrelevant. There are two gesture combinations for the spell,
but the shorter one may be used only once per day (i.e. per battle) by
any wizard. The longer one may be used without restriction. A *shield*
spell offers no defence.
Cause Light Wounds
gestures W-F-P. The subject of this spell is inflicted with two points
of damage. Resistance to heat or cold offers no defence. A simultaneous
*cure light wounds* will serve only to reduce the damage to 1 point. A
*shield* has no effect.
Cause Heavy Wounds
gestures W-P-F-D. This has the same effect as *cause light wounds* but
inflicts three points of damage instead of two.
gestures F-S-S-D-D. The subject of this spell is hit by a ball of fire
and sustains five points of damage unless he is resistant to fire. If at
the same time an *ice storm* prevails, the subject of the *fireball* is
instead not harmed by either spell, although the storm will affect
others as normal. If directed at an ice elemental, the fireball will
destroy it before it can attack, but has no other effect on the creatures.
gestures S-W-W-C. Everything not resistant to heat sustains 5 points of
damage that turn. The spell cancels wholly, causing no damage, with
either an *ice storm* or an ice elemental. It will destroy but not be
destroyed by a fire elemental. Two *fire storms* act as one.
gestures W-S-S-C. Everything not resistant to cold sustains 5 points of
damage that turn. The spell cancels wholly, causing no damage, with
either a *fire storm* or a fire elemental, and will cancel locally with
a *fireball*. It will destroy but not be destroyed by an ice elemental.
Two *ice storms* act as one.
gestures D-P-P. If the subject of this spell is a wizard, next turn he
must repeat identically the gestures he made in the current turn,
including stabs. If the subject is a monster it will attack whoever it
attacked this turn. If the subject is simultaneously the subject of any
of *confusion*, *charm person*, *charm monster*, *paralysis* or *fear*
then none of the spells work.
gestures D-S-F. If the subject of this spell is a wizard, next turn he
writes down his gestures as usual and after exposing them, rolls 2 dice
to determine which gesture is superseded due to his being confused. The
first die indicates left hand on 1-3, right on 4-6. The second roll
determines what the gesture for that hand shall be replaced with: 1=C,
2=D, 3=F, 4=P, 5=S, 6=W. If the subject of the spell is a monster, it
attacks at random that turn. If the subject is also the subject of any
of: *amnesia*, *charm person*, *charm monster*, *paralysis* or *fear*,
none of the spells work.
gestures P-S-D-F. Except for cancellation with other enchantments, this
spell only affects humans. The subject is told which of his hands will
be controlled at the time the spell hits, and in the following turn, the
caster of the spell writes down the gesture he wants the subject's named
hand to perform. This could be a stab or nothing. If the subject is only
so because of a reflection from a *magic mirror* the subject of the
mirror assumes the role of caster and writes down his opponent's
gesture. If the subject is also the subject of any of *amnesia*,
*confusion*, *charm monster*, *paralysis* or *fear*, none of the spells
gestures P-S-D-D. Except for cancellation with other enchantments, this
spell only affects monsters (excluding elementals). Control of the
monster is transferred to the caster of the spell (or retained by him)
as of this turn, i.e. the monster will attack whosoever its new
controller dictates from that turn onwards including that turn. Further
charms are, of course, possible, transferring as before. If the subject
of the charm is also the subject of any of: *amnesia*, *confusion*,
*charm person*, *fear* or *paralysis*, none of the spells work.
gestures F-F-F. If the subject of the spell is a wizard, then on the
turn the spell is cast, after gestures have been revealed, the caster
selects one of the wizard's hands and on the next turn that hand is
paralyzed into the position it is in this turn. If the wizard already
had a paralyzed hand, it must be the same hand which is paralyzed again.
Certain gestures remain the same but if the hand being paralyzed is
performing a C, S or W it is instead paralyzed into F, D or P
respectively, otherwise it will remain in the position written down
(this allows repeated stabs). A favourite ploy is to continually
paralyze a hand (F-F-F-F-F-F etc.) into a non-P gesture and then set a
monster on the subject so that he has to use his other hand to protect
himself, but then has no defence against other magical attacks. If the
subject of the spell is a monster (excluding elementals which are
unaffected) it simply does not attack in the turn following the one in
which the spell was cast. If the subject of the spell is also the
subject of any of *amnesia*, *confusion*, *charm person*, *charm
monster* or *fear*, none of the spells work.
gestures S-W-D. In the turn following the casting of this spell, the
subject cannot perform a C, D, F or S gesture. This obviously has no
effect on monsters. If the subject is also the subject of *amnesia*,
*confusion*, *charm person*, *charm monster* or *paralysis*, then none
of the spells work.
gestures S-P-F. On the turn following the casting of this spell, the
subject cannot include any gestures made on or before this turn in a
spell sequence and must restart a new spell from the beginning of that
spell sequence. The spell does not affect spells which are cast on the
same turn nor does it affect monsters.
Protection from Evil
gestures W-W-P. For this turn and the following 3 turns the subject of
this spell is protected as if using a *shield* spell, thus leaving both
hands free. Concurrent *shield* spells offer no further protection and
compound *protection from evil* spells merely overlap offering no extra
gestures W-W-F-P. The subject of this spell becomes totally resistant to
all forms of heat attack (*fireball*, *fire storm* and fire elementals).
Only *dispel magic* or *remove enchantment* will terminate this
resistance once started (although a *counter-spell* will prevent it from
working if cast at the subject at the same time as this spell). A
*resist heat* cast directly on a fire elemental will destroy it before
it can attack that turn, but there is no effect on ice elementals.
gestures S-S-F-P. The effects of this spell are identical to *resist
heat* but resistance is to cold (*ice storm* and ice elementals) and it
destroys ice elementals if they are the subject of the spell but doesn't
affect fire elementals.
gestures D-S-F-F-F-C. The subject of this spell immediately contracts a
deadly (non-contagious) disease which will kill him at the end of 6
turns counting from the one upon which the spell is cast. The malady is
cured by *remove enchantment* or *cure heavy wounds* or *dispel magic*
in the meantime.
gestures D-W-W-F-W-D. This is the same as the disease spell except that
*cure heavy wounds* does not stop its effects.
gestures D-W-F-F-(d. For the next 3 turns not including the one in which
the spell was cast, the subject is unable to see. If he is a wizard, he
cannot tell what his opponent's gestures are, although he must be
informed of any which affect him (e.g. summons spells, *missile* etc
cast at him) but not *counter- spells* to his own attacks. Indeed he
will not know if his own spells work unless they also affect him (e.g. a
*fire storm* when he isn't resistant to fire.) He can control his
monsters (e.g. "Attack whatever it was that just attacked me"). Blinded
monsters are instantly destroyed and cannot attack in that turn.
gestures P-P-(w-(s. This spell is similar to *blindness* only the
subject of the spell becomes invisible to his opponent and his monsters.
All spells he creates, though not gestures, can be seen by his opponent
and identified. The subject cannot be attacked by any monsters although
they can be directed at him in case he becomes visible prematurely.
Wizards can still stab and direct spells at him, with the same hope. Any
monster made invisible is destroyed due to the unstable nature of such
magically created creatures.
gestures P-W-P-W-W-C. For the next 3 turns, the subject (but not his
monsters if a wizard) makes an extra set of gestures due to being
speeded up. This takes effect in the following turn so that instead of
giving one pair of gestures, 2 are given, the effect of both being taken
simultaneously at the end of the turn. Thus a single *counter-spell*
from his adversary could cancel 2 spells cast by the hastened wizard on
2 half-turns if the phasing is right. Non-hastened wizards and monsters
can see everything the hastened individual is doing. Hastened monsters
can change target in the extra turns if desired.
gestures S-P-P-C. The subject of this spell immediately takes an extra
turn, on which no-one can see or know about unless they are harmed. All
non-affected beings have no resistance to any form of attack, e.g. a
wizard halfway through the duration of a *protection from evil* spell
can be harmed by a monster which has had its time stopped. Time-stopped
monsters attack whoever their controller instructs, and time-stopped
elementals affect everyone, resistance to heat or cold being immaterial
in that turn.
gestures D-W-S-S-S-P. This spell only works if cast upon a wizard. The
next spell he completes, provided it is on this turn or one of the next
3 is "banked" until needed, i.e. it fails to work until its caster
desires. This next spell which is to be banked does not include the
actual spell doing the banking. The spell must be written down to be
used by its caster at the same time that he writes his gestures. Note
that spells banked are those cast by the subject not those cast at him.
If he casts more than one spell at the same time he chooses which is to
be banked. Remember that P is a *shield* spell, and surrender is not a
spell. A wizard may only have one spell banked at any one time.
gestures S-P-F-P-S-D-W. This spell only works if cast upon a wizard. The
next spell he completes, provided it is on this turn or one of the next
3, and which falls into the category of "Enchantments" (except
*anti-spell*, *disease*, *poison*, or *time-stop*) will have its effect
made permanent. This means that the effect of the extended spell on the
first turn of its duration is repeated eternally. For example, a
*confusion* spell will be the same gesture rather than re-rolling the
dice, a *charm person* will mean repetition of the chosen gesture, etc.
If the subject of the *permanency* casts more than one spell at the same
time eligible for permanency, he chooses which has its duration
extended. Note that the person who has his spell made permanent does not
necessarily have to make himself the subject of the spell. A
*permanency* spell cannot increase its own duration, nor the duration of
spells saved by a *delayed effect* (so if both a *permanency* and
*delayed effect* are eligible for the same spell to be banked or
extended, a choice must be made, the losing spell being neutralized and
working on the next spell instead).
gestures (p. This is not a spell and consequently cannot be cast at
anyone. The wizard making these gestures, irrespective of whether they
terminate spells or not, surrenders and the contest is over. The
surrendering wizard is deemed to have lost unless his gestures completed
spells which killed his opponent. Two simultaneous surrenders count as a
draw. It is a skill for wizards to work their spells so that they never
accidentally perform 2 P gestures simultaneously. Wizards can be killed
as they surrender if hit with appropriate spells or attacked physically,
but the "referees" will cure any diseases, poisons etc immediately after
the surrender for them.
gesture stab. This is not a spell but an attack which can be directed at
any individual monster or wizard. Unless protected in that turn by a
*shield* spell or another spell with the same effect, the being stabbed
suffers 1 point of damage. The wizard only has one knife so can only
stab with one hand in any turn, although which hand doesn't matter. The
stab cannot be reflected by a *magic mirror* or stopped by *dispel
magic* (although its *shield* effect *could* stop the stab). Wizards are
not allowed to stab themselves and must choose a target for the stab.
Knives cannot be thrown.
There follows a sample game with following comments. Significant spells
are marked +. Null gestures are in brackets. Underlined gestures and
above cannot be used further due to the effects of an *anti-spell*.
Turn BLACK WHITE
Left Right Damage Left Right Damage
1 W W + 0 W + P 0
2 W P + W + D
3 D F + F + + W
4 D + D + P + + W 3
5 F + P S + S +
6 F + P 1 W D +
7 S D W + + D
8 S W W + + S +
9 F F + S + + F +
10 P + (C) + D + + W ++
11 Stab + P P ++ + D +
12 P + S P + D +
13 P + S 6 C C +
14 W + W S + + S
15 + S + + S W + + P
16 + D + D W + + F 5
17 W + S + 11 C + C
18 D + P + + S + S
19 D + F + 13 + D + D
20 C + + C S + S 10
21 W + W P + W
22 P P F + W
1. Black starts with 2 W's hoping to use the left as a possible W-W-S
*counter- spell* in the event of White opening with an attack, or as a
possible W-W-F-P *resist heat* spell. His right hand also opens for a
possible *counter-spell* or W-P-F-D *cause heavy wounds* if White has no
possible attack; the second P will also cover against any S-D *missile
attack*. White has the same ideas for his left hand as Black and opens
with a P for his right hand in case Black tries a stab, leading to
P-D-W-P *remove enchantment* hopefully.
2. Both complete their second gestures as intended and both notice that
neither can use an offensive spell on the third turn so they can switch
their left hands to W-W-F-P *resist fire*. Black notices that the only
spell White could be preparing with his right hand is remove enchantment
and hence his own *resist fire* would be canceled. Since he cannot
adjust his right hand sequence to produce a *counter-spell* he resolves
to use his latest W to start a W-D-D-C *lightning bolt*.
3. White had to continue his *remove enchantment* in case Black called
his bluff but now knows it is pointless to continue as there will be
nothing to cancel. Black is certain to hit White with an unstoppable
*cause heavy wounds* next time but notices too late that, had he instead
of gesturing a D with his left hand, gestured a W, he could have cast a
W-W-S *counter-spell* at White and stopped his *resist heat* from
working. However, he has a *lightning bolt* coming as compensation...
4. Black hits White with his *cause heavy wounds* and White becomes
fire- resistant. White notes that had he gone ahead with his *remove
enchantment* spell he would have been doing two P gestures this turn -
surrendering! Instead he performs a W with his right hand to time a
*counter-spell* after Black's last continuation.
5. Black aborts his *lightning bolt* spell, but White still follows
through with his *counter-spell*, just in case. Black switches to the
other combination for *lightning bolt*, D-F-F-D-D and sneaks in the
start of an amnesia D-P-P. White commences a *summon ogre* P-S-F-W with
his left hand, but upon seeing that next time he will be struck by
*amnesia* realizes that he won't be able to continue it. Knowing the
nature of the spell, he decides to switch next time to a spell starting
off with 2 identical gestures, a W-W-S *counter-spell* for safety.
6. Black hits White with the predicted D-P-P amnesia spell, meaning that
White must repeat his gestures next time with the same hands. White
knows that he has a "free" S-D *missile* on Black since Black cannot do
a P shield to defend himself or he would be performing the *surrender*
7. Since Black knows White's gestures, he can tell that White will be
able to time a *counter-spell* to ward off the proposed *lightning bolt*
D-F-F-D-D, so he changes to a *fireball* F-S-S-D-D. However, White is
resistant to fire so a P-D-W-P *remove enchantment* is called for from
the right hand.
8. White surprised Black by repeating his W gesture in the left hand so
he can now time a counter spell for the next round and thus prevent the
*remove enchantment* from affecting his fire invulnerability (although
his resistance to fire will be unaffected by the *counter-spell* since
he has already cast the spell on himself in round 4). With his right
hand, White half-heartedly starts off a *confusion* spell to interrupt
Black next time.
9. Black does 2 F gestures having to change in mid-spells after White's
cunning gestures last round. He decides to go for a *blindness* spell
D-W-F-F-(d with his right hand, and for *cold resistance* S-S-F-P with
his left, to cut his losses. White casts the counter spell W-W-S on
himself so that his *confusion* D-S-F will work on Black.
10. Black writes down P for his left hand and F for his right, and White
writes D and W. Since Black was hit by a *confusion* last time one of
his gestures will be affected. He rolls a C on the right hand and this
supersedes the F he had written down. Since he didn't C with his other
hand and C is a 2-handed gesture, it counts as a null. Note that if he
had rolled for a P he would have surrendered. White finishes off a
*summon goblin* spell S-F-W, and a *missile* S-D. Black's left hand
finishes a *resist cold* S-S-F-P but he decides to use only the last
gesture as a P *shield* so that neither of White's attacks harm him. Now
he will wish to dispose of the goblin as soon as possible so he can stop
performing P's to protect himself.
11. Black stabs the goblin and, since only 1 hit is required to kill it,
eliminates it. He also gestures a P *shield* so that it cannot harm him
in that turn. White gestures for an *amnesia* D-P-P and a *lightning
bolt* W-D-D-C (the sort which can only be used once per wizard). He also
performed a P *shield* but didn't notice and since it is in the
"protection" section it was cast upon himself. If he had cast it at the
goblin it wouldn't have been killed. Black realizes that he will have no
defence against either of White's forthcoming attacks, so chooses to
work 2 spells beginning with the same gesture next time so that the
amnesia won't be too damaging.
12. Black must start off both gestures from scratch after the stab and
half-C and opts for P-P-(w-(s *invisibility* and *resist cold* S-S-F-P.
White's *amnesia* spell is completed so Black must repeat next time as
13. Black repeats, and White does a C gesture with both hands to
terminate a W-D-D-C *lightning bolt* giving 5 points of damage to Black.
White cannot cast another *lightning bolt* using the same gestures now,
even if he does W-D-D-C since this type is allowed only once per battle.
However, he may use the alternate gestures if he desires.
14. Black aborts his right-hand spell since a W with both hands is
needed for the *invisibility*. White does 2 S gestures, hoping for a
C-S-W-W-S *summon elemental* and either an *anti-spell* S-F-F or *summon
15. Black goes invisible for the next 3 turns so White won't be able to
see his gestures. White continues with his *summon elemental* but has
the option to change to a *fire storm* sequence if he so desires.
16. Realizing that he is about to be hit by an *anti-spell* S-P-F from
White, Black opens up with 2 *missiles* S-D and catches White off guard.
Next time Black must gesture from scratch again. Although White does not
see Black's gestures he knows he has been hit by 2 *missiles* so can
work them out.
17. For the second time, Black starts up for a *lightning bolt* W-D-D-C,
hoping this time to complete it, and a covering *anti-spell* S-P-F so
that White will be unable to defend himself from it. Meanwhile White
realizes he is resistant to fire and unleashes a *fire storm* giving 5
points of damage to all those not fire-resistant which just happens to
18. White does 2 S gestures again hoping to fool Black into thinking
that he will repeat the sequence he used after the last C gesture,
whereas he intends to hit out with 2 S-D *missiles* next turn (when
Black becomes visible again). Black continues with his plan.
19. Black is surprised by the 2 *missiles* from White and is not
performing a P *shield* which would protect him. White is hit by Black's
*anti-spell* S-P-F but is unaware of the impending *lightning bolt*
20. Black hits White with his *lightning bolt* as White prepares 2 more
*missiles* which would kill Black if they hit, but, noting Black's C he
daren't risk the possibility of it being followed by a pair of W's for a
C-(w *magic mirror* which would reflect them back at White. Hence White
decides to go for another *anti-spell* and *fire storm*.
21. Black does perform the 2 W's planning to *cause heavy wounds* or
defend with *counter-spell*. White continues as planned and Black
becomes aware that he is about to be burned to death.
22. Resigning himself to defeat Black surrenders just as White's
*anti-spell* hits him. The battle ends before White can make the final C
gesture which would have disposed of his enemy. White wins the contest.
_Waving Hands_ (also known as _Spellcaster_) © Richard Bartle
Taken from _Duel Purpose_ fanzine, written by Mike Lean
Scanned, OCRed, and edited by Andrew Buchanan
March 3, 1993
Edited by Ken Tidwell, April 9, 1994
Follow up can be directed via snailmail to:
74 Friary Park,
ISLE OF MAN.
Andrew's current understanding is that Richard Bartle is deceased. His
(and my) apologies and compliments to Richard should he reads this page.
Richard Bartle has been in contact and reports that his wife finds him
in good health. He can be contacted at email@example.com
The Game Cabinet <../> - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ken Tidwell <../biography/KenTidwell.html>