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Wrath wrote:Games like World of Warcraft, Rift and Everquest all have amazingly high magic worlds and have a magic mart setting. Nothing about those settings diminishes how magical the world is, yet all of them basically encourage you to continually upgrade gear.
I think there are two conflicting goals being considered here. The more fantastical we make the world, the less fantasical any given aspect of the world will be.
A city where everyone travels around on magical beasts and flying carpets, and most rich people have a genie servant of some kind, might be an evocative place, but in that city, acquiring a magic lamp will become a relatively mundane event.
Or we could go in the low-fantasy direction. You can have a world where magic potion that gave someone the ability to turn invisible was an incredible and shocking discovery, as long as you first make the world a gritty Game-of-Thrones type place.
There's probably a Conservation of Wonder effect at work here.
It's not just the amount, but also how codified the magic is. Whether in world or in the game rules. It's hard to evoke the wonder when the details of the spell are laid out on page 357.Even in the low-fantasy world, that potion of invisibility may be a wonder to the characters, but it won't be to PF players.