Elemental Magic

There is a belief among some that magic is not something that comes from an alien plane, but is an inherent power of this world, unlocked for the first time since mankind took over the planet and imposed rigidity over an otherwise malleable force of nature. A sphere of magic that might well prove this is what is known as elemental magic, which describes supernatural command over elements found in nature. Those that believe otherwise may argue differently, that elemental magic shows exactly how strange magic is in how it unnaturally manipulates the components of the world.

Either way, there is common thought around this kind of magic, even if there is diversity in meaning and opinion. The basic elements are understood to be water, earth, fire and air, and each of these may have their own sub-categories, such as ice, metal, heat and weather, although these can be considered equally powerful to any other element if a mage finds themselves specialising in only one. They may also have talents in tree-growing and plant manipulation, and find themselves crossing with some concepts of Wild Magic.

A mage with influence over an element can manifest their power in a variety of ways. A mage may have telekinetic control over an element — hydrokinesis, terrakinesis, pyrokinesis, etc. — or be able to generate it from nothing. They could be able to convert themselves into a form that mimics their element, or have certain immunities and physical/mental gifts that relate most to their element. They may have a few of these talents at a subtle scale, or only one with a certain amount of raw power behind it.

Magics with rituals tend to be more trusted by society, as there are mechanics that buffer between mankind and the magic being manipulated. Subtler magics, like telepathy and empathy and even healing, may be more acceptable as well, as they have context and precedence. Because elemental magic is so often done without ritual (although not always) and is often very visual, it can inspire some measure of fear and distrust towards people that can do it, as they may be seen as more inhuman than others, bearing resemblance to other magical beings. Despite this stigma, mages that focus on elemental magic are no more different to other mages as other mages are to each other.