Interlude – Magnakai Disciplines



Aside : Just as I was doing a final review of the draft for this post, a dreadful event has been reported in my home city.  Please keep everyone who has been affected by this in your thoughts.


OK – the rest is my draft, corrected for typing errors etc.



Alright, this entry is going to be a little drier than most, because I’m actually going to talk through a series of rules that always bothered / confused me as a youngster.

Aside : Yes, I’ve accepted that I am no longer a youngster.

Retrieving the Book of the Magnakai (conveeeniently at the point in the series when I attained all 10 Kai Disciplines) has given Lone Wolf the springboard to start learning Magnakai Disciplines, which are, in many ways, souped-up versions of the basic Kai Disciplines attained through books 1-5.

One point, on which the original books were unclear, was the degree to which you could still use the original Kai Disciplines (such as Healing) if you didn’t yet have the ‘new’ improved versions.

So – I’m going to set out here the details of all 10 Magnakai Disciplines and, for those following along, confirm (with the help of Project Aon) what extra skills each Discipline confers (on top of my existing abilities).

This page was my main reference.

But first – I have finally actually achieved the ability of Weaponskill.  Will it be referable to my MEGASWORD??  My R10 check is a 3, which is a….Short Sword!  According to the Readers Handbook here (entry on Sommerswerd) Weaponskill in any sword means wielding the Sommerswerd gives me a +2 Weaponskill bonus to Combat Skill.

Without further ado, these are the 10 Magnakai Disciplines!

Weaponmastery (improved version of Weaponskill)

Choosing this discipline has the following advantages :

  • You get to CHOOSE (rather than randomly pick) three types of weapon in which to have mastery.
  • This includes the bow, a weapon which gets used fairly often in the Magnakai adventured.
  • The bonus for using a mastered weapon is +3 rather than +2.  For the bow, that means +3 to the R10 check that is usually used to determine if your arrow hit its mark.  This can often make a MASSIVE difference.

Animal Control (improved version of Animal Kinship)

The description is a little vague, but basically allows for improved communication with animals.  There is a specific note that this Discipline significantly improves Lone Wolf’s horsemanship.

Curing (improved version of Healing)

Now, here’s where it gets interesting.  Healing already restores 1 Endurance per (non-combat) paragraph from wounds.  Curing retains this, but also includes the ‘extra’ ability to heal Endurance lost from such things as non-eaten meals, and also gives the Kai Master the ability to cure such things as disease and blindness in others as well as himself.  It also grants certain herbalist abilities, including identification of roots, berries, potions and so forth.

Invisibility (improved version of Camouflage)

Increased ability to blend in with surroundings, including the adoption of mannerisms and dialects of other cities and lands.

Huntmastery (improved version of Hunting)

Once more, it is important to note that the existing Hunting ability means that Lone Wolf will normally be able to forego the need to eat a Meal from his backpack.  Huntmastery simply extends that ability to areas such as desert and wasteland.  It does also mean greater levels of skill and dexterity, meaning it is unlikely that Lone Wolf will be surprised during an ambush.

Pathmanship (improved version of Tracking)

This higher Discipline gives the ability to read foreign languages, follow tracks, detect traps and always (!) instinctively know which way is north.

Psi-Surge (improved version of Mindblast)

It is made clear that Lone Wolf retains his (now) pre-existing Mindblast ability (+2 CS). Psi-Surge, when utilised, gives a +4 bonus to Combat Skill, but at a loss of 2 Endurance points per round when used.

Psi-Screen (improved version of Mindshield)

Improved resistance to mental attacks and hypnosis.  It also means the ability to ‘see through’ illusions and similiar attempts at deception.

Nexus (improved version Mind Over Matter)

Nexus enables Lone Wolf to withstand extreme heat and cold, along with the continuing ability to move objects with his mind.

Divination (improved version of Sixth Sense)

In addition to the ongoing ‘Spidey-Sense’ ability to detect danger, this also allows Lone Wolf to sense psychic ability in others and to communicate telepathically with certain people and creatures.

Just in cast this wasn’t complicated enough, there are now certain ‘Lore-Circles’, the practical effect of which is, if you have the Disciplines that make up a certain ‘Lore-Circle’, you get bonuses to Combat Skill and / or Endurance.


So [drumroll] I have to pick three Disciplines.  I think Weaponmastery is actually important, not so much for my Sommerswerd, but because the +3 bonus on firing arrows could be a real life-saver.  For my weapons, I choose Sword, Bow and…..Mace.  Divination is another clear choice, since advance warning of deadly situations is also vital.  For my third one, I think I’ll keep my ‘base’ abilities of Mindblast, Hunting and Healing, and forego their Magnakai equivalents for the moment.  I’ll therefore go with Pathmanship.

Come back next time for the mission background, along with other thrilling things like equipment!




8 thoughts on “Interlude – Magnakai Disciplines

  1. Ah, I’d completely forgotten about the existence of Lore-Circles. They reminded me of the board game Risk, where if you controlled all the countries of a continent, you got bonus armies before each turn.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. “Curing…but also includes the ‘extra’ ability to heal Endurance lost from such things as non-eaten meals” hi Tim, i’m afraid is not right, even Project Aon doesn’t specify this stuff…so i think that you can not use Curing to restore your EP lost because of non-eaten meals.
    If you’re starving nothing can help you 😀 😀

    Liked by 2 people

      1. One of the more surreal consequences of the Grand Master books’ not mentioning that Healing and its upgrades restore 1 Endurance per combat-free section (as mentioned in para 6 of the section linked to above) is that it is technically possible (though admittedly unlikely) to get Lone Wolf killed with a cabbage (see book 18, section 318). That ranks alongside book 13’s ‘you save the world again and a bridge falls on you’ on the list of most rubbish ways to fail gamebooks.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Fascinating. I never noticed that as a child. I’d just total all the Endurance losses together without checking what caused them and then let Healing sort them out. This will make my next playthrough more … interesting.


  3. The Lore circles add an interesting strategic element, as common sense would dictate that you should go for balance and pick disciplines that are as different from each other as possible; however with the Lore circles you are rewarded for doing the opposite.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Its also another bonus for long term players. Someone who’s starting with this book will be forced to frantically try to cover as many bases as possible whereas a long termer will already have Healing, Mind Shield and Mind Blast and probably Weaponskill so they can afford to go for Lore Circles instead.

      Liked by 1 person

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