[WiC] The School of Cryomancy

Study the arcane applications of cold with this D&D 4E wizard school from guest blogger Adam Page.

While the established schools of magic, enchantment, illusion, evocation are taught around the known world, it is the lesser known schools, those of transmutation, or pyromancy that require a special pilgrimage from prospective students of the arcane arts. This is probably most evident with the school of cryomancy, that is to say the study of magically enhanced cold, of animated ice shards and summoned ice demons. While not a common school, it has gained recent recognition with the impending change of season.

Apprentice Mage
While most mages learn to wield destructive power and how to fight their foes with spells that are as likely to hurt their allies as their enemies, those of the cryo-magic school learn how to alter the boundaries of the natural world to release the forces of the cold upon only their foes.

Benefit: You gain a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls against enemies with arcane attacks with the cold keyword. This bonus increases to +2 at 11th level and +3 at 21st level.

Expert Mage
Cyromancers spend a lot of time in isolated study of the natural world, especially in areas of extremes of climate. They become hardened to survival in these arctic wildernesses

Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus to Nature and Endurance skills checks.

Master Mage
Those who succeed in the path of cryomancy exert a level of control upon arcane forces that is incredible, turning a foe’s internal body heat against themselves.

Benefit: Your arcane attacks ignore an amount of cold resistance equal to your level. In addition, creatures with fire resistance hit by your arcane attacks are considered to have vulnerability to cold damage equal to their resistance.

While many adventurers are lucky to have arcanists with the ability to create safe campsites with flickering magical fires, most adventurers have to make do with mages who have only a limited ability to form fire, and not every party of heroes wants to attack a pile of sticks with a column of fire every time they want to cook some wild boar. It is unknown which creative spellcaster learnt how to manipulate the arcane flow of energy to dry wood to allow it to light easily and burn cleanly.

Drywood * Wizard Utility
"The wet pile of sticks and branches before you crisps and dries before the startled eyes of your allies."
At-Will * Arcane, Fire, Implement
Standard * Personal
Effect: You remove the moisture from a 20lb pile of wet material such as sticks.

At Will Attack Powers
In the cold air of the snow covered glaciers, exposed skin quickly chills below the ambient body temperature and goes numb. Adventurers are not so foolish as to travel or fight in the wilderness without protection, so it is up to you to use your magical force to cause them to experience the pain and disorientation this chilling numbness causes.

Frost Numbness * Wizard Attack 1
"When the cold wind blows, it’s time for your foes to feel it…"
At-Will * Arcane, Cold, Implement, Evocation
Standard Action * Ranged 5
Target: 1 Creature
Attack: Int vs Fortitude
Hit: 5 Cold Damage, and the target takes a -2 penalty to attack rolls until the end of its next turn.

Encounter Attack Powers
Most mages, and especially those who study the dangerous arts of pyromancy learn to wield fire, shaping it into the deadly spells of legend and lore. But some learn how the frigid air of the winter wastelands washes over beings like a flame, and those mages learn to conjure these waves of frigid flame and direct them over their foes.

Frigid Flame * Wizard Attack 1
"You conjure a wave of blue flame, that washes over your foes, leaving them frozen rather than burnt."
Encounter * Arcane, Cold, Implement, Evocation
Standard Action * Close Blast 3
Target: Enemies in burst
Attack: Int vs Reflex
Hit: 1d8 + Intelligence modifier Cold damage and the target takes ongoing 5 cold damage (save ends).

It is not enough for your magical attacks to chill and freeze your opponents. To mater the true control over the elements, you must learn how to control your opponent’s body, making them more vulnerable to the magical cold at your fingertips.

Cold Torpor * Wizard Attack 3
"Your foes shudder and shiver before you, as your powerful magic chills them to their bones."
Encounter * Arcane, Cold, Implement, Enchantment
Standard Action * Melee Touch
Target: 1 or 2 Creatures
Attack: Int vs Fortitude
Hit: The target takes a -2 penalty to its Fortitude defense (save ends), a -2 penalty to saving throws against ongoing Cold damage (save ends), and gains Vulnerable 5 Cold. (save ends).

During the springtime, the valleys of the northern wildlands flood with the quick flowing streams, swollen with the melt water from the snow covered peaks and glaciers. Travelling during these first few weeks of warm sunlight is a dangerous business, and as single step can plunge you into fold water that saps your life away in seconds. Some mages cast spells upon the turgid waters, freezing them into blocks that can be crossed safely. 

Of course, such spells can freeze the water inside a body just as easily.

Solidify * Wizard Attack 7
"Your bolt of blue tinged magic strikes your foe, freezing them solid from the inside out."
Encounter * Arcane, Cold, Implement, Evocation
Standard Action * Ranged 5
Target: 1 Creature
Attack: Int vs Fortitude
Hit: 2d6 + Intelligence modifier Cold damage and the target is immobilized until the end of your next turn.
Miss: The target is slowed until the end of your next turn.
Effect: Creatures that end their turn adjacent to the target take 5 Cold damage.

Utility Powers
Deep snowfall in the arctic wastes can mask a myriad of dangers, from crevasses that you may fall into and never escape, or lightly packed snow just ready to collapse and avalanche down a mountain side. Countless travellers have been lost in these dangerous areas, so you must learn quickly how to step lightly to avoid danger.

Snowflake Step * Wizard Utility 2
"Traversing unsafe glaciers requires your movement and steps to be as gentle as a snowflake."
Daily * Arcane, Enchantment
Minor Action * Personal
Effect: Until the end of the encounter, you gain a +2 power bonus to acrobatics and can ignore the penalty from difficult terrain when shifting.

In early spring as the world rotates around its distant sun, the seemingly endless dark winter nights give way to the shimmering sunlight. Unwary travellers looking eastwards at the magnificent orb of light are often blinded, their eyes permanently damaged by the sunlight reflecting in incredible ways from the pure white snow upon the ground.

Snow Glare * Wizard Utility 6
"Years of travelling in the arctic conditions have conditioned your eyes to adjust to the bright glare from the reflected sun."
Daily * Arcane, Enchantment
Minor Action * Personal
Effect: Until the end of the encounter, you are immune to the effects of the Blinded condition.

It's said that those who spend to long upon the glaciers and snow covered peaks become as cold hearted as the snow upon which they walk. It is certainly true that everything they carry and wear becomes covered in a layer of snow and ice that refuses to melt or fall away. Wise mages know how to enchant this snow in order to protect them from the inherent dangers of these lands, such as Frost Giants.

Iceberg Armour * Wizard Utility 10
"Accumulated snow blown onto your armour solidifies into a shield of ice."
Daily * Arcane, Cold, Enchantment
Minor Action * Melee Touch
Target: You or one ally
Effect: The target gains a power bonus to his AC equal to 1 + half your Constitution modifier. Each time an attack against the targets AC deals damage, the attacker takes Cold damage equal to your Constitution modifier, and the power bonus decreases by 1.

See more entries in the Winter Is Coming RPG Blog Festival.

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