This is my first attempt to write a Compendium class.

This is my first attempt to write a Compendium class.

This is my first attempt to write a Compendium class.

Critique is welcome.


When you have used your arcane prowess to defeat a legendary monster and you have reached 5th level, you can become an Arch-Mage. There is no formal announcement by your peers. If you truly deserve the title, everyone just knows.

Call the Wizards’ Council

When you put forth the call and gather the great wizards of your world to council, roll + your level.

On a 12+, they gather and will listen to you, heeding your wisdom. +1 forward for all social rolls during this council.

10+ they gather and will listen to you are done speaking until bickering and feuding.

7-9 they gather and begin bickering and feuding immediately.

On a miss, none respond or maybe just one or maybe they respond angrily.

Craft your Artifact

When you have gathered the arcane ingredients necessary to create an artifact (a meaningful piece of a creature of at least 12 Hit Points, a rare mineral and a ), the GM will let you know what you need to do on this list in order to complete the artifact, checking off 1 to 4 options:

__You need the aid of a mythical beast of great renown.

__You need the aid of a legendary hero/villain/rival

__You need one more ingredient that is in a dangerous locale.

__You need the blood/heart/bone/tooth/eye of a monster or god.

__The skills of a master craftsman.

When you are done the GM will co-create the item with you, though the GM has the final say.

Create your Spell

Once a level, when you have a few months and access to an arcane library to do the proper research you may create a spell. Each time you use this spell, the level of the spell you may attempt to create goes up by 1.

Write the spell as you would like it to work. The GM may veto it, so get it into good form so that the GM is a fan of it.

Once the draft is finished, roll + INT.

12+ The spell works better than intended.

On a 10+ The spell works as intended and has a charming side-effect that reflects your own personal views or history.

On a 7-9 The spell works as intended but has some side-effects that could make life difficult for the caster.

On a miss, the spell is a bane to all who cast it.

The GM will let you know how it works and the final draft of the move as it should be written on your character sheet.

Name your spell!


When you find an NPC or PC who would make an appropriate apprentice to an Arch-Mage, ask them if they would like to be your apprentice, tell them what they will have to do in order to become a journeyman, swear oaths and begin your lessons.

Ask your apprentice their thoughts on the best course of action and if you follow their advice, take +1 forward while pursing that course of action. Mark experience if you are not successful in your pursuit and take time to discuss the apprentice’s advice and its consequences. 

What is needful

+1 for any roll in which you pursue non-magic, non-violent solutions to problems.

Wizardly Wisdom

Players gain 1XP when they take your advice about arcane matters.

Subtle and Quick to Anger

When you witness someone abusing magic in a foolish manner and you unleash your wrath upon them, roll +CHA.

12+ They must stop their abuse or  else suffer your wrath, you take +2 forward for as long as their foolery continues. 

10+ They must stop their abuse or  else suffer your wrath, you take +1 forward for as long as their foolery continues.

7-9 You take +1 for your next action against them opens you up to an attack from them.

Grey to White

When you return from the Black Gates, you may choose 1:

__ Change your name and get rid of a class move and replace it with a move from a different Class.

__ Change your name and re-make your character in a different Class at the same level.

__ A Greater Power sends you back to accomplish one goal. Take +1 when you are directly pursuing that goal and once it is achieved, leave the mortal world forever.

24 thoughts on “This is my first attempt to write a Compendium class.”

  1. First thing I noticed at a quick glace: your “entry move” doesn’t feel like the thing you should be able to do right away once you qualify, it feels like something you should be able to do after you’ve qualified.

    What’s the “entry qualification” for the class? Making a unique spell? Overcoming a major magical foe? Whatever it it, that should be the base for the intro move, then everything should branch off that.

  2. My first thought is that “roll+your level” is HUGE. I guess at level 10 you’ve probably earned enough respect to be guaranteed that everyone shows up and acts respectfully, but is seems like even a low level Arch-Mage (five is low for an Arch-Mage, right?) can’t actually FAIL the call…

    Also, “Create your Spell” is a bit confusing in the beginning. I think you’re trying to say that you can create a level 1 spell, then a level 2 spell, then a level 3 spell, etc.

    However, it seems like you could create a level 1 spell, cast that spell 5 times, then create a level 6 spell…

    Also, these moves are super rad and I want to be an Arch-Mage.

  3. I think it could work both ways, but it makes a statement about wizard culture.

    If it’s +level, no one would dare refuse to answer the call of a level 10 wizard, or even bicker and feud with the level 10 wizard. Wizards are all about power and magical learning.

    If it’s +Cha, then wizarding becomes much more political.That Arch-Mage might be the most powerful and knowledgeable wizard in the world, but he’s a jerk and everyone hates him, so no one is coming to his party.

  4. Maybe my memory is off, but that seems like more moves than most Compendium classes grant you access to.

    Perhaps there’s actually 2 or 3 different compendium class here.

    Maybe an Enchanter gives you magic item and spell casting?

  5. Wait. Defeat a legendary monster AND reach level 10? Did you mean or? Because otherwise, you’ll never roll less than a 12 on the council move.

    Also, what do you roll for subtle & quick to anger?

  6. And I’m feeling that Ralph Mazza  is right and this is in fact 1.5 Compendium classes combined into one. I might cut it down quite a bit.

    Thank you all for your comments and thoughtful critique!

  7. Is it normal for some moves to hinge on GM choice, like Craft Artifact? I’d just as soon bring it down to a +WIS roll to choose 1/choose 2/choose 4, and the GM interprets what that means.

  8. Judd Karlman: Cool, I’m not that familiar with the more in-depth bits. I don’t actually currently own AW or the final DW. (I got the pre-KS version.)

  9. Hmm! “Craft your Artifact” seems kind of… redundant? I mean, look at “Ritual”, which all Wizards already get. Although Craft doesn’t require a place of power, but seriously, what archmage is without a place of power?

    I also really dig Grey to White, though (and the whole concept in general)

    Call the wizard council could definitely use potential negative modifiers, though. As it stands, you’ll never fail the roll, with a minimum of +6 you can’t roll less than an 8. Maybe even “roll +half your level, rounded down”? So the very mightiest of wizards, at level 10, will never fail, and at worst get 7-9. And a few minuses like “If you call them on short notice” “if you don’t explain your reasons for calling them, or if your reasons aren’t of critical important to all wizardkind” “if you don’t send out the call to EVERY wizard” etc.

  10. Well, you could do something like “When you use a Ritual to craft an artifact, choose one: You don’t need a place of power, or you can choose a requirement-type that the GM can’t choose.” or such. I did something similar with “Warp-Wright” move for my Chaos Mage compendium class posted a while back.

  11. You’ve got a knack for rituals: the following are the places of power for you:

    * choose weather condition: storm/hurricane/monsoon/blizzard/flood

    * choose a natural wonder: volcano/underground river/highest peak/underwater trench/hot tub

    * choose a man-made environment: stone circle/top of the tower/bottom of the dungeon/sacred room of a temple/cliff lighthouse

    * choose a supporter help: handful/dozen/hundred/thousand/… of archmages/high priests/kings/lords/believers/elves/sentient beings/… must be chanting/dancing naked/using drugs/fight each other to death/…

  12. Better yet: if two of the following conditions are met, this is the place of power for you. Obviuosly, you’ll want to make a ritual in hot tub on a volcano surrounded by stone circle where a dozen of archmages are dancing naked.

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