|As of Master of Magic v1.31, Magic Vortex is known to be malfunctioning in at least one way. Please read the Known Bugs section below.|
|Spell Type||Combat Instant|
Creates a wind funnel that moves semi-randomly across the battlefield, with the following effects:
Magic Vortex is a Rare Combat Instant belonging to the Chaos Magic realm. It may only be cast during combat, and may be targeted at any unoccupied battlefield tile. For 50 the spell will create a Vortex of winds and lightning. This Vortex moves across the battlefield on its own (with some intervention from the caster).
If the Vortex passes over any unit (including the caster's own), it will deliver 5 points of Doom Damage to that target (resulting in exactly 5 points of Damage, with no Defense or Resistance rolls allowed). When the Vortex passes adjacent to any unit it has a 25% chance to inflict an 5-strength Armor Piercing magical attack on that target. Finally, if the Vortex moves into any tile inside the 4x4 town-proper area during a town siege, each Town Building in the town has a 5% chance of being destroyed.
Magic Vortex creates a magical swirl of wind and lightning which moves on its own. It will cause significant damage to any unit (friendly or enemy) caught in its path, and may cause serious damage to Town Buildings during a siege.
Random Movement Edit
The Magic Vortex itself will move semi-randomly across the battlefield. It does so at the end of its caster's turn (i.e. after all of the caster's units have ended their turn). The Magic Vortex first moves 3 tiles at random. It picks a direction, moves, picks another direction, moves again, then picks a final direction, and moves again.
While this movement is largely erratic, the Magic Vortex will never simply move back and forth. It can only change direction by a maximum of 90 degrees compared to the last movement it made. On the other hand, it may freely move into tiles containing units, City Walls, and most other obstacles.
After these three moves have been made, the Magic Vortex's caster may make one final movement of their own choice - moving the Vortex 1 tile in any direction. Only then does the opponent's turn begin. The restriction on direction change does not apply to this move, in fact, the caster can direct the Vortex right back to the square it just left. However, the direction of this move does limit the first random move that the Magic Vortex will take during its next turn.
Units may not elect to move into the tile currently occupied by a Magic Vortex (but other Vortices can). If the Magic Vortex moves on top of a unit, that unit may move away but cannot return to the same tile until the Vortex moves away.
Each time the Magic Vortex moves to another tile (whether randomly or by command), it may cause one of the effects listed below, depending on what assets are in the destination tile or in adjacent tiles.
Doom Damage Edit
If the Magic Vortex moves into a tile containing any unit (whether friendly or enemy), it will immediately deliver 5 points of Doom Damage to that unit.
Doom Damage does not require any To Hit rolls to determine inflicted hits, nor does it allow its target to make any Defense or Resistance rolls to reduce the damage. Thus, 5 points of Doom Damage equal exactly 5 points of Damage dealt to the target.
Secondary Damage Edit
When the Magic Vortex moves into a tile that is adjacent to any unit (friendly or enemy, and diagonals are included), the game rolls a random number between 1 and 4. If the roll comes up 1 (a 25% chance), the Magic Vortex will strike the target with an Armor Piercing attack of strength 5.
Several units may be struck simultaneously by this effect. For example, if the Magic Vortex moves into a tile that's between two units, both units will have a separate 25% chance of being afflicted. They might both be hit, one might be hit, or neither might be hit - it's all random.
Units possessing Magic Immunity or Righteousness will never take damage from this attack. The conditional effects of Bless, Resist Elements, Elemental Armor, and Large Shield also apply, albeit their bonus will be halved along with the unit's Defense.
Town Building Destruction Edit
Finally, during town siege battles, whenever the Magic Vortex moves into any of the tiles inside the 4x4 "town proper" area (usually marked by buildings and roads for easy identification), the game will roll a random number between 1 and 100 for each Town Building in the town. Any building that rolls a 5 or less is immediately destroyed. It is possible (though unlikely) for more than one building to fail the roll simultaneously - in which case each one will be destroyed.
This effect can only happen once per turn. In other words, even if the Vortex moves through four different town proper tiles during the same turn, it will still only trigger the building destruction effect once.
However, Magic Vortex does not destroy City Wall sections when it moves through them.
Magic Vortex may only be cast during combat, for a basic Casting Cost of 50. It may be targeted at any tile that does not contain a unit (friendly or enemy) or other significant obstacle.
Upon casting, the Magic Vortex will appear in the target tile - a funnel of winds with lightning bolts lashing out from its center.
The Magic Vortex is maintained by magic, but is not considered a unit. It can be removed by either Dispel Magic, Disenchant Area, or their True versions, although this is not automatic in either case - the normal rules for dispelling attempts apply. The Magic Vortex will also disappear on its own immediately at the end of combat, and does not carry over to the campaign map. Therefore, it has no Upkeep Costs.
As a Rare Chaos spell, Magic Vortex may become available to any Wizard who possesses at least 2 Spellbooks. However, its availability during the game is not guaranteed unless the Wizard acquires at least 10 Spellbooks.
Wizards with 2 to 9 Spellbooks have a random chance of being able to Research Magic Vortex during the game. The chance for this spell to appear for research increases with the number of Chaos Spellbooks the Wizard possesses or obtains during gameplay. With 10 or 11 Spellbooks, the spell is guaranteed to appear for Research at some point, if it is not already available for casting.
Magic Vortex has a base Research Cost of 1,120.
With at least 2 Spellbooks, the Magic Vortex spell may be acquired as a reward for winning encounters in creature Lairs, Towers, et cetera, or when conquering the Fortress of a rival wizard who has already researched this spell.
Magic Vortex is as powerful as it is risky. It can deliver massive amounts of damage if it moves through the enemy lines, but its semi-random movement means that it may end up attacking the caster's own units instead. Therefore, wizards casting Magic Vortex should be aware that their forces are also at risk from this spell.
Cast Magic Vortex close to a concentration of enemy troops, and, if at all possible, stay away from those troops. When it comes to deciding which way the Vortex should go, always move it away from friendly units.
Casting Magic Vortex during a town siege is dangerous, especially if it's the caster's own town being besieged! The last thing anyone would want is for the Vortex to rampage through their own town and destroy their own Buildings. Even if the siege is at an enemy town, if keeping that town after the battle is a priority, it may be better to forgo the use of this spell. If the intention is to Raze the town, however, the attacking Wizard may feel free to obliterate it with a Vortex (or two).
Known Bugs Edit
While it is possible to cast several Magic Vortices during the same battle, this may cause the game to become unstable, and it may end up crashing. Because of this, Insecticide reduces the original game's Vortex limit per combat from 10 to only 4.