Sunday, February 05, 2023


I will continue with the treasure tables in my next post. I wanted to take a minute to talk about a possible spell system for use in CTE. The magic system that I have in mind will introduce a new resource: Magic. Spells require Magic to cast.

Consider this possibility for a Firebolt spell.


This spell can target any one monster in either the threat or the shadow areas. Flip cards from the top of the deck and reduce the monster's might by the total value of the cards flipped. You must exhaust one Magic for each card flipped. You cannot flip more cards than the spell level of Firebolt.

Magic Spells Ignore Menace

Lots of new things here. First is that the spell doesn't take the monster's menace into account at all. It just does damage directly, but the amount of damage is random for each card flipped and magic spells don't have a trump suit.

Spells Level Up

There is also the matter of the spell's level. When you find a spell book, you read the book to learn the spell. The first time that you do this, you gain the spell at level 1. Each time after this that you read a spell book for a spell that you already know, this will increase the spell's level by +1.

You Control the Level at Which You Cast a Spell

It's always a good idea to increase a spell's level when you can. You will always be able to cast a spell at a lower level when you don't want to exhaust too much Magic. That brings us to our last two points: Exhaust and Magic.

Magic Comes From The Face Down Cards In Your Tableau

Magic is represented by the face down cards in your tableau. This means that under normal circumstances you will only have Magic to cast spells if you have taken damage. However some items will give you Magic allowing you to add additional cards to your tableau. These Magic cards will always stay face down.

Exhausting A Card Means Turning It Sideways

Exhaust is a game term that just means to rotate a Magic card 90 degrees to show that it has been used. That's it. That's the basics of how a spell works in CTE.

Potion Economy

There will also be Magic potions that will allow you to replenish an exhausted Magic card and Life potions that will let you remove damage. As you play through the CTE campaign you will acquire items of equipment that you won't want to use. These will be able to be "sold" for potions.

Life Potions

Minor Life Potion - If you have fewer than 3 face up cards in your tableau, flip over one card. If this card was exhausted, rotate it 90 degrees. (Face up cards are never exhausted.)

Magic Potions

Minor Magic Potion - choose one exhausted face down Magic card and rotate it 90 degrees. This Magic card is no longer exhausted.

More coming soon! In the meantime feel free to leave a comment below and/or join my Facebook Group to discuss this post and anything related to RPG's and geekdom! Stay tuned!!


  1. Sounds good, I like the spell level-up system, it reminds me of original Diablo. I'm not sure about the flipped damage cards and mana cards being represented the same way... Seems like it could get confusing. Was that a mana card or a damaged normal tableau card? If the system ever allows your Tableau to increase above 3, then I could see that getting harder to track and remember on what is mana and what is health. But that's just with a read-thru... I will have to play it to know if it's really an issue. Good work so far!

  2. No need to make any distinction. Face down cards can be used for mana full stop. Face up cards can be used for actions full stop. No reason to keep track of which was which and when. It really makes no difference at all. You will always evaluate and react based on the cards as they are in the moment. What they were or what they may be just doesn't matter. So, hopefully in play this will prove easy to understand. I have a long way to go before I am ready to publish. If the description of things proves to be misleading, then I may have to add some examples to clarify, but I really don't think that things will be confusing in practice. (Fingers crossed, I turn out to be right on this!)