Mage Marksman
A character able to use ranged weapons and functional magic.
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(permanent link) added: 2013-07-27 22:47:22 sponsor: KeyofEden edited by: lycropath (last reply: 2013-09-24 00:13:20)

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Combining swordplay and sorcery is a viable strategy in your Standard Fantasy Setting, but perhaps this magic wielding character prefers to engage enemies at a distance to use their Improbable Aiming Skills. Or perhaps this character lives in a setting where Fantasy Gun Control isn't in effect and swords are obsolete. Enter the Mage Marksman.

The Mage Marksman comes in two flavors:

1.) The Magic Gunman, who uses a gun in tandem with magic. Aside from simply being another means of bringing the pain, magic spells may supplement the missile weapons, such as time spell that makes it easier to land headshots, or using telekinesis to rip an enemy out of cover. The Magic Marksman is commonly found in Urban Fantasy and Gaslamp Fantasy settings, where magic exists but using a sword simply wouldn't make much sense.

2.) The Magic Ranger, who uses archery instead of firearms. The Magical Ranger's powers may include summoning animals in fights, Trick Arrows, Magic Music, or your standard fare Elemental Powers. The Magic Ranger will usually be found in the Standard Fantasy Setting, but may wander into other fantasy settings too.

Compare Magic Knight, wherein the character uses a sword and magic. See also Postmodern Magik. Not to be confused with Depleted Phlebotinum Shells, where the weapons or bullets themselves are magically enhanced.

Examples

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     Magic Gunman 

Anime & Manga

Literature
  • Harry of The Dresden Files routinely uses guns in combination with his magical tools, as does most everyone in the supernatural community. There are few creatures so mighty that they can't be brought down by modern weaponry applied correctly.
  • Star Wars Expanded Universe:
    • The Coruscant Nights trilogy, set a year or so after Revenge of the Sith, introduces a Jedi sect called the Gray Paladins who eschew lightsabers in favor of blasters and favor a minimalist approach to the Force. The mainstream order considered them borderline heretics.
    • Members of the New Jedi Order often carry blasters in addition to lightsabers. This shouldn't be too surprising given many of their number are former military.

Myths & Legends
  • Railroad Bill was an African American outlaw who robbed trains and sold goods to the poor at a reduced price, like a Postbellum Robin Hood. Aside from his skill with rifle, he was believed to use shapeshifting powers to evade capture time and time again.

Tabletop Games
  • Dungeons & Dragons
    • Dragon magazine #71 has Murlynd, a "Quasi-Deity" of the Greyhawk campaign setting. He is able to shoot guns in combat as well as casting spells.
    • The Spelljammer and Forgotten Realms campaign settings had primitive firearms (e.g. flintlocks) that could be used by spellcasters.
  • Shadowrun
    • Mages can cast spells, but smart ones will keep a firearm handy as well.
    • Casting spells can cause fatigue damage as well as possible body damage, or even death.
    • Chi-Adepts can use their magic powers to enhance their ranged combat skills, becoming something like Gunkata embracers, with a mix of gymnastics and dual-wielding pistols as their signature combat style.
  • Most pyskers in Warhammer 40K prefer to fight at long range, though using their powers to assist their shots is more of an RPG occurence (Dark Heresy, etc.).
  • Deadlands had Hexslingers; a combination of a Huckster (a spell-caster) and a gunslinger, who specialised in spells that affected their shooting.
  • The Castle Falkenstein supplement Sixguns & Sorcery has spellslingers, gunslingers who could enchant magical spells onto their bullets.
  • Pathfinder. Spellslingers from the Ultimate Combat book. They are a wizard archetype who can use spells to magically enhance bullets.

Video Games

     Magic Ranger 

Anime & Manga

Literature
  • Discworld's Mustrum Ridcully is a wizard who likes to hunt animals with a crossbow in his spare time.
  • After Conall loses to Dhugal in an informal archery contest early in The Kings Justice, Kelson explains to Dhugal why it wouldn't have been fair for him to have joined the competition, and he shoots an arrow "precisely in the center of the target." Then he demonstrates how he can use his Deryni powers to enhance his archery skills, shooting a second arrow exactly alongside the length of his first. Dhugal is suitably astonished when Alaric Morgan does likewise at Kelson's request (without looking at the target while he shoots); the result is four arrow shafts in a tight square in the target. The scene foreshadows their parts in the rescue of Duncan from Loris and Sicard; Kelson and Morgan use their powers to deflect the arrows of Loris' archers as they shoot at the captive Duncan.

Tabletop Games
  • Also in Pathfinder is the standard animal-summoning Ranger class, and the Arcane Archer prestige class, who can give their arrows a number of magical effects and also use arrows to deliver area of effect spells.
  • In Dungeons & Dragons any spellcasting character proficient in archery would qualify. In 3.X Edition an archery-track ranger (as opposed to a Dual Wielding-track one) is a particular example, having a class spell list and automatically gaining archery-improving feats.

Video Games
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