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The ArM Code

The ArM Code allows members of the mailing list to quickly communicate their experience with and attitude towards Ars Magica, while displaying their geeky tendencies. People certainly aren't required to use it, but quite a few people do, and this tells you what they are on about.

Contributors: David Chart, Erik Dahl, JÚr˘me Darmont, Lucy Hewitt, Chad Hooper, Leif Olav J°sang, Stuart Kenny, Eric Kouris, Alon Lichinski, Roderick Robertson, Neil Taylor, Sheila Thomas

ArM Code: Indicates the Code version.
1.0The original version
1.1Additional categories
1.2More additional categories
1.3Added Latin, Troupe, and English categories
1.4Revised Fanzine, Troupe, Year, added Sensitivity
1.5Lots of little revisions, added Canon
1/2/3/4: Indicates your preferred edition. Numeral indicated by N below.
N++I think Nth edition is infinitely superior to all others.
N+I like Nth edition for many reasons.
NI play according to the Nth edition rules.
N-Nth edition is the basis for my game, but I also draw from other sources.
N--I use stuff from many different editions, but Nth edition comes the closest.
!NI have only seen Nth edition.
Ca: Indicates your involvement with the published canon.
Ca+++I'm the line developer (or was at one time).
Ca++I've written a book, or contributed to several.
Ca+I've contributed to a book (co-author, illustrator, playtester).
CaI have most of them.
Ca-I have a lot of them.
Ca--I only have a few of the books.
!CaI don't have any of the books, except the free ones.
R: Indicates your knowledge of the rules.
R+++I wrote them.
R++I don't need to refer to my rule book.
R+I can find anything I need first time.
RI know roughly where things are, and I can handle the basics.
R-Um, Technique + Form + Other Stuff?
R--How many XP do I need for a 3rd level Flambeau?
!RI just roll the dice when they tell me to.
H: Indicates your knowledge of medieval history.
H+++I have published scholarly articles.
H++I have several feet of books on my shelves.
H+I have researched a few medieval legends and characters.
HI've read the historical stuff in the various ArM books.
H-I've seen The Name of the Rose.
H--I've seen Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
H---I've seen Excalibur.
!HWho needs history? I'll make up my own.
L: Indicates your knowledge of Latin.
L++Lingua nativa mea est.
L+Speak Latin 3 (Hermetic terms)
LI can read Latin with a dictionary and form basic grammatical constructions.
L-I recognize a lot of words and tenses and know a couple of Latin phrases.
L--I know to say "mah-goos" and "mah-gee."
!LI speak, read, and understand no Latin.
?LI just use a Latin dictionary. It's, er, mortus bonus.
G: General experience with RPGs.
G++++I remember the furor D&D caused in the Wargame community when it first came out.
G+++I have the equivalent of the SSI printing of Dragonquest, the complete Irilian series from White Dwarf, and the Judges Guild version of City State of the Invincible Overlord sitting on my shelf. All are falling apart due to repeated use.
G++I fondly remember Dragon magazine's "What's New With Phil & Dixie," and was devastated when the series ended.
G+I recall when Wizards of the Coast announced it was closing its roleplaying division to "concentrate on its core business" of collectible card games.
GI can distinguish d20 from AD&D.
G-...from Warhammer 40K.
G--I played that vampire game once.
G---Isn't D&D kind of like Magic: the Gathering?
!GI'm not interested in other roleplaying games.
Y: Year I began playing ArM.
Y(##)Year I began my current saga.
Y##Year I began playing Ars Magica (Y95 is 1995).
Y####Year I began playing Ars Magica (for those of you who like long dates; Y2001 is 2001).
T: Indicates how often you play (from Troupe).
T(#)Number of players in our troupe.
T++I play more than once a week.
T+I play about once a week.
TI play about twice a month.
T-I play about once a month.
T--I don't get to play very often.
!TI don't want to play the game. I just want to indulge in pointlessly detailed flamewars on the list.
SG: Indicates how often you storyguide.
SG++I am the only storyguide in our saga.
SG+I am the Alpha storyguide in our saga.
SGI regularly act as storyguide.
SG-I have only tried SGing once or twice.
SG--I am not now, nor have I ever been a storyguide.
!SGI would never like to SG
P: Indicates how closely you keep to the Medieval Paradigm.
P++We research details of recipes to know what the covenant eats.
P+We try to base our stories on recorded medieval myths.
PWe try to avoid anachronisms, like plate armour.
P-We try to avoid anachronisms, like gunpowder.
P--Richard the Lionheart and Charlemagne team up to defeat the Mongol Horde.
P---...using magical nukes.
PPParadigm Policeman.
P!*#Shut up with the P-word! You'll start another flamewar!
!PWe don't play in Mythic Europe.
HoH: Houses of Hermes, and your attitude towards them.
Houses
BjBjornaer     JJerbiton
BBonisagus     MMercere
CrCriamon     MaMerinita
ExEx Miscellanea     TrTremere
FFlambeau     TyTytalus
GGuernicus     VVerditius
    Other
DDiedne
GrGruagach
HgHedge Wizard
OOOrder of Odin
OGOrder of Geonim
OSOrder of Suleiman
XX++I really, really like this House.
XX+This House is pretty cool.
XXMy current character/interest is in this House.
XX-I don't like this House.
XX--I read the description and decided this was for sad powergamers/treehuggers/backstabbers/historical research freaks.
!XXThis doesn't exist in my game.
HoH+  What the heck, I like 'em all!
!HoH  I don't like the Houses. Why can't everyone belong to mystery cults instead?
FZ: Fanzine involvement.
FZ(E)I speak English, and thus refer to Hermes' Portal
FZ(F)I speak French, and thus refer to Ars Mag
FZ+++I regularly contribute to a fanzine (publisher, editor, illustrator, columnist).
FZ++I subscribe to a fanzine, or write for it fairly often.
FZ+I've written an article for a fanzine.
FZI bought an issue of a fanzine.
FZ-I've read a copy of a fanzine.
FZ--I've read a preview of a fanzine.
FZ---Really? There's an active fanzine for Ars Magica? How can that be possible?
!FZI'm not interested in the fanzines.
C: COOFness
C+++I was posting when the list started.
C++I've been on the list for ten years or more.
C+I've been posting to the list for many years.
CI've lurked for years.
C-Journeyman lister (about three years).
C--I just joined the list.
!CWhat's a COOF?
E: Competence with English
(no entry)English is my native language, or I am fluent in it. Don't correct me unless you're just being pedantic.
E-My English is pretty good, but there may well be mistakes. Please point them out and interpret generously.
E--I speak English rather poorly; please supply corrections and bear with me.
:-): Sensitivity
:-DNothing short of a death threat will make me take offense.
:-)If you really mean to offend me, look angry.
:-|Good-natured fun is fun, but use smileys when you joke.
:-("Irony" is like "silvery," only made of iron.
:-XThat's not funny!!!
Cd: Attitude to the ArM Code
Cd+++I came up with the idea.
Cd++I contributed to the design.
Cd+I can translate it without thinking.
CdI worked mine out.
Cd-It's kinda dumb, but everyone's doing it.
Cd--It's incredibly stupid. I participate under extreme duress.
!CdI hate the ArM Code and I would never waste my time on it. [This entry may be used without any of the others.]
So, as an example, if my ArM Code were:

ArM Code 1.5 5++ Ca+++ R+++ H++ L G++ Y89 T(5)- SG P+ HoH(B+, F, Ma+) FZ(E)+++ C++ :-) Cd+++

it would indicate that I'm using version 1.5 of the code, I think the fifth edition of the rules are the best, that I am the line developer, that I wrote the rules (which may explain the previous entries), have several feet of books on my shelf, can read Latin with the aid of a dictionary, fondly remember "What's New with Phil and Dixie" (growf!), am in a troupe of five players that plays about once a month, regularly storyguide (although not at the moment, yippee!), have been playing ArM since '89, try to base my adventures on real legends, like Bonisagus and Merinita magi and currently play a Flambeau, subscribe to Hermes' Portal and regularly contribute, am a computer programming langua-- er, sorry, I mean a veritable COOF, speak English as my native language, am not easily offended, and responsible for the whole sorry mess.


Abbreviations Ars Magica FAQ Table of Contents Publications >