For my setting, Tabula Viridis, I wanted to explain why a mage would ever research any ninth level ritual other than Wish.
Alex has, in other threads, commented that he requires shards of an ancient artifact for them. But that requires too much work on my part (heh).
After reading through PC, I had the idea that I could make Wish a higher level effect than 9th, and only breakthrough research could produce something that a mage could cast.
However, I wanted an 11th level mage to be able to research it, just risky. Both Thomas and Alex corrected my math, and … ouch. Not quite what I wanted.
So I’m adjusting a bit.
Lesser Wish is a 9th level effect. Wish is a 10th level effect. A mage can research Lesser Wish with Pioneering or Radical experimentation - if they get a major breakthrough or better, it becomes a Wish.
Once the ritual formula is devised, of course, the mage can cast it at the usual 9th level rates, and there is evidence that such things have happened in the past … so it might be possible to steal a ritual formula instead of researching it fresh.
My math says that Galswintha (Int +2, library +3, base throw 6+) can research a 9th level spell on a 10+, Conventional 8+, Pioneering 6+, Radical 4+.
Pioneering or Radical is required for a major breakthrough, and she would manage a Wish on a 16+ or 14+, respectively. And have horrible things happen on an unmodified roll of 1-3.
A truly amazing mage (Int +3, library +3, base throw 3+ at 14th level) can research a 9th level spell on a 6+, Conventional 4+, Pioneering 2+, Radical 0+. Such a mage only has a 50/50 chance of managing a true Wish even with radical experimentation, and still has that 15% chance of horror. That suits me pretty well.
With that in mind, I wrote up the following list of ritual spells and their actual levels that are “known of” in Tabula Viridis lore:
Spells marked with * are in PC, with ** are from other sources like Rules Cyclopedia.
Arcane 7: Cancellation*, Energy Drain*, Lore**, Mass Invisibility**, Phase Door, Power Word**, Spell Turning*, Statue**, Teleport Object**, Teleport Without Error**.Any thoughts?
Arcane 8: Force Field**, Mass Charm**, Opposition*, Permanency, Polymorph Any**, Summon Efreeti*, Temporal Stasis*.
Arcane 9: Contingency**, Gate**, Lesser Wish**, Life Trapping*, Plague*, Planar Travel, Undead Legion*.
Arcane 10: Wish.
Divine 6: Cureall**, Find the Path**, Forbiddance*, Harvest, Longevity*, Regeneration*.
Divine 7: Cataclysm*, Earthquake**, Energy Drain*, Holy Word**, Resurrection, Survival**.
Divine 8: Miracle*.