I'm re-reading Gardens of the Moon, this time much more critically. I've also picked up a copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. They had copies of the British original version (Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone) in the stores in Korea, but I neglected to pick one up. Now I regret that. I recall comparing the American and British texts in a Kyobo Books and was astounded by how heavily the American version was edited. I'm actually quite disappointed by that--I find the British dialect to be quite charming and a much better fit.
In gaming news, I'm trying to put together a Conan game, but not very confident that it will work out. My cousin seems to only know how to play illiterate barbarians capable of saying little more than "Thock smash!" so I'm not certain he'll last long in a city where wits are just as important as sword-skills in order to survive. My brother is mentally exhausted from his job and doesn't even want to think about rolling up a character. Finally, everybody's schedules are so mixed and muddled that I'm already frustrated and disappointed with how things are developing. I imagine I won't be able to game for a while yet. I will make an attempt at getting things started this weekend, but my hopes are quite low.
Dammit, I want to run something, and I don't much care if I have to wait. But I want to run something.
I've made some headway into my own house-rules for Conan sorcery. I've adapted ley-lines and nexuses from Kevin Siembieda's Palladium system.
Near (2 miles)
+20% range and duration of spells, wards, and circles
At/on Ley Line (or 2 miles from Nexus)
+50% range, duration, damage of spells, wards, circles
Sorcerer can draw 1 PP per round
Within 200 ft. of Nexus Point
Doubles range, duration, damage of spells, wards, circles
+2 Will save vs. horror or magic
Can draw 2 PP per round
Increased Energy Periods
Midday/midnight—Can draw extra 2 PP (4 PP at Nexus) for one minute
Vernal (spring)/Autumnal (fall) Equinox—Day (Vernal) or Night (Autumnal) 4 PP per round. Amount doubles to 8 PP at sunrise, noon, sunset, midnight of these days (1 minute each)
Summer/Winter Solstice—Can draw 4 PP per turn. At dawn 30 PP, sunset 15 PP (each lasts 5 minutes).
Lunar Eclipse—3 PP per round for 90 minutes
Partial Solar Eclipse—6 PP per round (2d4 minutes) and 50 PP at its zenith (1 minute)
I think these rules will work pretty well. I also added a feat for circle magic, especially as a sort of metamagic tool that can be used in combination with certain spells. I've house-ruled summoning to be more difficult--the summoner must engage in a "war of souls" (i.e. a battle of wills) with whatever he summons. Thus, summoned demons will have to be subdued. The use of special circles will grant bonuses to the summoner's rolls against any summoned entity. Not sure if I should limit the number of circles a sorcerer can know or not. I decided that I don't have to limit them. However, I should perhaps give them a DC check against Spellcraft to see if they can correctly draw the circle from memory.
I've never liked how D&D handled summoning monsters. It should be much more difficult and much more specific than how it is described in the spell lists. To that end, I vastly prefer how Conan's system handles it.