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Kurkistan

Hemalurgy Requires Special sDNA

52 posts in this topic

I'm not sure if this is old, old news, but I just noticed this tidbit from the interview database:

Comatose (18 October 2008)
So here's my last question. If there ARE people on the other side of the world, did Vin kill them all by placing the sun on their side, or do they have they're own Ruin/Preservation battle going on over there as well? Do they also have allomancy feruchemy and hemalurgy?

Brandon Sanderson (20 October 2008)
No, they're not dead. Yes, Rashek was aware of them. In fact, he placed them there as a reserve. I knew he wanted a 'control' group of people in case his changes to genetics ended with the race being in serious trouble. All I'll say is that he found a way other than changing them genetically to help them survive in the world he created. And since they were created by Ruin and Preservation, they have the seeds of the Three Metallic Arts in them—though without anyone among them having burned Lerasium, Allomancers would have been very rare in their population and full Mistborn unheard of.



If this isn't simply Brandon misspeaking, then this implies that only Scadralians can actually use Hemalurgy, at least to one degree or another.

It could mean that a Scadralian needs to be the onle to place the spike (in the victim and/or the recipient) and/or it could be that a Scadrialian is the only one who can benefit from a spike. We already know that spikes can steal anything they please, so you don't need to be special to be a victim of Hemalurgy.

Any way you slice it, it makes spikes a bit less "oh, you got a metal splinter? There goes your magic!" and a bit more deliberate.

I'm inclined to think that this means that only sentient Scadralians can actually create Hemalurgic spikes, and that they must be in contact with the spike at the moment when they use it on their victim. This would explain why bullets haven't spiked out Mile's Augur or Bloodmaker abilities yet, at the very least.

We then have this possibly conflicting bit:

Chaos (17 October 2008)
Would the Three Metallic Arts operate in other worlds, or are they direct results of Ruin and Preservation and thus only operate in Scadrial?

Brandon Sanderson (20 October 2008)
To use Feruchemy or Allomancy in almost every case, one must have the right spiritual and genetic codes, imprinted upon people during the creation of Scadrial by Ati and Leras. To use Hemalurgy, one must first have someone with these right spiritual and genetic codes, then take the power from them. Other people on other worlds are not going to simply discover the Three Metallic Arts by accident.



Eh. Could go either way. He doesn't specify Hemalurgy as the one that people could discover by accident, so it could just be that you'd need some worldhopper DNA before you could do anything.

---

Just wanted to get this out there and spur some discussion, back the Shardblades and Hemalurgic decay! Edited by Kurkistan
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What about Spook? The one who stabbed him wasn't directly touching the bit that splintered off. I'd say you need to be Scadralian to receive a spike, but not to be spiked or do the spiking. The spike still needs to hit the right bindpoints to steal their powers and for other worlds a god metal might be needed to steal powers so obviously then they couldn't discover it.

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What about Spook? The one who stabbed him wasn't directly touching the bit that splintered off. I'd say you need to be Scadralian to receive a spike, but not to be spiked or do the spiking. The spike still needs to hit the right bindpoints to steal their powers and for other worlds a god metal might be needed to steal powers so obviously then they couldn't discover it.

Yeah, that sword. Could be a more metaphysical "contact" where the swordsman was wielding the spike, like how an Inquisitor who wore gloves might be surprised if his spiking of someone didn't work.

Actually, it's occurred to me (sorry, I was fast when I posted that because I was in the middle of a reply on another thread when I ran across that quote) that it actually probably isn't the case that only Scadralians can receive spikes. Recall that Catquisitors (may they reign for 1024 years!) are theoretically possible, and more generally that animals can receive Hemalurgic spikes, so there's nothing special about humans/kandra in that regard. It could be the case that animals on Scadrial still have the Ruin/Preservation recipe in them, but it seems less likely that they have the necessary attributes.

EDIT: The AoL Ars Arcanum author also acts (x6 Combo!) very interested about Hemalurgy, saying it is "of great interest to the Cosmere. I think there are great possibilities for its use." That suggests a broader application than just to Scadrialians.

Edited by Kurkistan
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Yeah it's something I keep going back and forth over, it seems weird to me that Ruin could have a universally applicable magic system while no other Shards do. But perhaps this is a side effect of having an end-negative system? The only other thing I can think of is only Scadralian metal can be turned into spikes but I doubt that, the only thing I could think of is if Ruin's presence somehow gives Scadralian metals an increased Spiritual aspect or something (Not even sure how that woul work/if it's possible)

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All shardic powers seem to by trying to immitate something. Shallan's memories and Copper, Steel/Iron and Lashings, AonDor and general allomancy. They all seem to be attempting an immitation of what they once knew. Maybe hemalurgy's general use has something to do wtih that?

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All shardic powers seem to by trying to immitate something. Shallan's memories and Copper, Steel/Iron and Lashings, AonDor and general allomancy. They all seem to be attempting an immitation of what they once knew. Maybe hemalurgy's general use has something to do wtih that?

Good idea. Maybe the new magic systems are working from the ashes of the original one's coding.

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We worry about magic systems not working righ ton other worlds. AonDor seems to have failed to add in that mechanism, losing all or most power, and Hemalurgy seems to be the ultimate at this, losing no power. They all tried to immitate something, but in their efforts they left out other pieces. Who's willing to bet we'll find something interesting by combining all the magic systems' similarities?

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We worry about magic systems not working righ ton other worlds. AonDor seems to have failed to add in that mechanism, losing all or most power, and Hemalurgy seems to be the ultimate at this, losing no power. They all tried to immitate something, but in their efforts they left out other pieces. Who's willing to bet we'll find something interesting by combining all the magic systems' similarities?

Well, looking at the Cosmere as a whole, we have as magic systems:

Allomancy: end positive, focus on metals, metals are consumed during use.

Feruchemy: end neutral, focus on metals, metals are not consumed during use

Hemalurgy: end negative, focus on metals, metals are not consumed, requires blood, a donor, and a host.

Awakening: end neutral (my opinion), focus on color, Breath and proper Commands required. Also requires a host for Breaths.

AonDor: end positive (power comes from Dor), symbol focused, large amount of variety, weakens based on distance.

Surgebinding: unsure if positive or neutral. Likely requires bound human/spren pairings. Requires Stormlight. Functions are limited by Order of KR.

Fabrials: end negative, likely. Requires trapped spren and Stormlight. Function seems locked at time of creation.

I forget the name of the other system on Sel, the one the Dakhor monks use. It is end negative, apparently, but it's powers are vague at best, so I'm hesitant to get into too much detail. Same with Forgery. However, looking at these, some interesting things pop out to me.

1) Hemalurgy, Awakening, and Fabrials all require a donor to begin working. Surgebinding requires a symbiosis (except Szeth for whatever reason).

2) Hemalurgy and Awakening require hosts. In Hemalurgy this is the spiked person, in Awakening it's whatever you intend to Awaken.

3) Fabrials and AonDor seem the most versatile in their effects. Both are tied to a natural process in the world, geography and spren accordingly.

That's all that pops out right now, but it's been a long day. Hemalurgy does seem to me to have a lot more in common with Awakening than any other system, though.

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Awakening is actually end-negative, since you never get your colors back. Allomancy and the 10 orders seem to have something in common, Shallans memory(Probably magic, and it involves blinking, just like surgebinding) is like a coppermind, pairing it to feruchemy. Reverse lashings have a resemblance to the role of a lurcher, and lashings can be sort-of compared to steelpushes. Awakening and AonDor share a broadness of possible effects as well.

We can't really get much from all this since we're missing 6 or so worlds worth of magic, but we can see the connections, and there are a lot of them.

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Awakening is actually end-negative, since you never get your colors back. Allomancy and the 10 orders seem to have something in common, Shallans memory(Probably magic, and it involves blinking, just like surgebinding) is like a coppermind, pairing it to feruchemy. Reverse lashings have a resemblance to the role of a lurcher, and lashings can be sort-of compared to steelpushes. Awakening and AonDor share a broadness of possible effects as well.

We can't really get much from all this since we're missing 6 or so worlds worth of magic, but we can see the connections, and there are a lot of them.

*Unnecessary oath incoming*

I will eat my hat if Awakening is end-negative. Brandon has said that "the overwhelming majority of cases, [investiture is] end-positive or at least neutral. Hemalurgy really is an oddity in the cosmere."

Besides that, Awakening is the most end-neutral thing I've ever seen. Color is only used at the moment of Awakening, and then Awakened objects keep on trucking forever, with completely reusable Breath being perfectly retrievable for non-Lifeless. Breath does provide a continuous, regenerating stream of energy (like a soul, even...), but the same can be said for where the energy comes from in Feruchemy.

Edited by Kurkistan
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Yeah I totally agree (although I do still fall in line with the end-positive belief) Awakening isn't end-negative, especially not because color doesn't come back. Metal doesn't come back, Surgebinding gems don't come back. The label end-positive, neutral, or negative seems to have do with what happens to the Investiture in a system, not what happens to a magic's physical component.

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Awakening is actually end-negative, since you never get your colors back.

Color isn't the power of BioChroma, just like metals aren't the power of Allomancy. Only the power seems to count in these end-equations: otherwise Allomancy would be end-negative, because you don't get the metals back.

I used to think of metal and color as fuel -it's a pretty intuitive interpretation, particularly since the process in Allomancy is described as "burning"- but I'm starting to wonder if that might not be the case. A lot of people get tripped up on the question of how Allomancy can be end-positive when it consumes the metals, and truth be told, it's a sensible question to ask.

But there's always another secret. We know that Brandon built an inconsistency into Allomancy as a clue that someone had tampered with it. Perhaps this is another case of that: a deliberate inconsistency as a hint that things are not what they seem. Magics that seem to consume fuel are described as end-positive, which seems like a contradiction in terms, but what if the fuel <i>isn't</i> consumed? What if it's more like a trade of sorts -dare I call it "equivalent exchange"- where you get the power in return for what you've given up, but the "fuel" is transferred to some other point in space and time and whatever other dimensions the cosmere has? We already know this is true for Atium: eventually it goes back to the Pits of Hathsin whence it came. What if it's true for all metals, even though the end destination might be different?

Question to ask Brandon at the next opportunity: When you burn metal for Allomancy or drain color for BioChroma, where does it go?

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Yeah I totally agree (although I do still fall in line with the end-positive belief) Awakening isn't end-negative, especially not because color doesn't come back. Metal doesn't come back, Surgebinding gems don't come back. The label end-positive, neutral, or negative seems to have do with what happens to the Investiture in a system, not what happens to a magic's physical component.

I always figure the end-positive/neutral/negative to be an indication of how much Investiture is lost during the process. Breath, for example, you can get back what you put in, as long as you are not creating Lifeless. Allomancy you get more than you put in, as burning a small amount of metal adds a relatively large amount of power.

If you look at it that way, Hemalurgy always results in less Investiture, as you lose some charge in the process of creating a spike. By the same token I think we're going to find that fabrials are end-negative as you, at best, have to trap a spren in order for them to work. Time will tell, however.

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*Unnecessary oath incoming*

I will eat my hat if Awakening is end-negative. Brandon has said that "the overwhelming majority of cases, [investiture is] end-positive or at least neutral. Hemalurgy really is an oddity in the cosmere."

Besides that, Awakening is the most end-neutral thing I've ever seen. Color is only used at the moment of Awakening, and then Awakened objects keep on trucking forever, with completely reusable Breath being perfectly retrievable for non-Lifeless. Breath does provide a continuous, regenerating stream of energy (like a soul, even...), but the same can be said for where the energy comes from in Feruchemy.

 

Dakhor is end-negative.

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A good point. Still possibly wrong, though.

 

Hemalurgy is quite unique in that it necessarily squanders power; it loses something to entropy. For all we know, Dakhor gets a 100% transference of power, or the sacrifices necessary to create its glyphs are simply initiators to an ongoing Shardic Investiture that really gets things done.

 

Actually, I think that second is more likely: the only time we see Dakhor just straigh-up sacrifice someone for magical effect is the instance of teleportation. Even then, the sacrifice might have been either a key to start Investiture, a small part of a greater Shardic whole, or used at 100% efficiency. Otherwise, it seems that you sacrifice people to create the glyphs, but then the Dor takes over and gives you its power going forward.

Edited by Kurkistan
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May I remind you that it is expilicitly said that each power granted by Dakhor requires sacrifices? That the number needed to make Dilaf's protection is huge? Look here:

 

AonDor (+) power from Dor, Aons glow

Dula fighting (=) power from self and movement, you and your trail glow

Dakhor (-) power from others (like Hemalurgy), victim and practitioner's bones glow

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May I remind you that it is expilicitly said that each power granted by Dakhor requires sacrifices? That the number needed to make Dilaf's protection is huge? Look here:

 

AonDor (+) power from Dor, Aons glow

Dula fighting (=) power from self and movement, you and your trail glow

Dakhor (-) power from others (like Hemalurgy), victim and practitioner's bones glow

 

No need for the bolding, Tal.

 

We also have Forging (+) and Bloodsealing (?), and literally every Sellian magic system is actually just a manifestation of a single overarching system--which system involves both of the Shards. There is no justification for using a pseudo process of elimination to categorize Dakhor as end-negative.

-On that note, Dula fighting likely isn't neutral. It almost certainly draws on the Dor, as enabled by the movements.

 

As I said, the power transfer may be 100% efficient (ala Feruchemy), or the sacrifices may just be the thing needed to get the Investiture going, after which the Dor takes over.

 

An Elantrian becomes an Elantrian by being Devoted to something, then gets access to the Dor; for all we know, a Dakhor monk becomes a Dakhor monk by sacrificing others and so changing their selves, then they get access to the Dor.

Edited by Kurkistan
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Very little is concretely known about the Dakhor magic system that it really can't be categorized at the moment.  However since all Selish magic is basically "one" and the two sub-magics we significant information on are both (likely) end-positive then it doesn't strain credulity to say they are all end-positive.  I'm not saying they are but I wouldn't be surprised.

 

P.S.  Just want to point out that ChayShan originated from JinDo, not Duladel.

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May I remind you that it is expilicitly said that each power granted by Dakhor requires sacrifices? That the number needed to make Dilaf's protection is huge? Look here:

 

AonDor (+) power from Dor, Aons glow

Dula fighting (=) power from self and movement, you and your trail glow

Dakhor (-) power from others (like Hemalurgy), victim and practitioner's bones glow

 

What I think Kurkistan is saying though is that if 100% of the Investiture of the sacrificed person is used, you end up end-neutral. You ALWAYS lose something from Hemalurgy, the Investiture never carries over 100%

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No need for the bolding, Tal.

 

We also have Forging (+) and Bloodsealing (?), and literally every Sellian magic system is actually just a manifestation of a single overarching system--which system involves both of the Shards. There is no justification for using a pseudo process of elimination to categorize Dakhor as end-negative.

-On that note, Dula fighting likely isn't neutral. It almost certainly draws on the Dor, as enabled by the movements.

 

As I said, the power transfer may be 100% efficient (ala Feruchemy), or the sacrifices may just be the thing needed to get the Investiture going, after which the Dor takes over.

 

An Elantrian becomes an Elantrian by being Devoted to something, then gets access to the Dor; for all we know, a Dakhor monk becomes a Dakhor monk by sacrificing others and so changing their selves, then they get access to the Dor.

 

I apologise, Kurk. I bold occasionally, to make sure everyone gets me correctly. It's a habit, a useful one, and I use it regularly. Please do not be offended.

 

I have not read the Emperor's Soul. So... not a clue.

 

Ok, you are correct about the Dula fighting. And about the artificiality. Again, I did not know of the other two, and  it seemed to fit well.

 

And it just seems wrong (and unsandersonian) for a sacrifice to be neutral or positive. For one, there needs to be a catch. More important reasons include that if all power is transferred, we can just go about killing people and nothing is lost. 

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@Weiry

 

Thank you for the correction.

 

@Vortaan

 

Yes, that is what I meant to get across. Thank you for attempting to clarify.

 

@Tal

 

No problem with the bold, it's just a bit of poor form (in my book, at least). Generally people use italics when they want to emphasize stuff (that I've seen, at least) since bold can be interpreted as shouting.

 

I would imagine that the "catch" is the whole "murder of innocents" thing. Killing people generally isn't considered to be an activity you "just" do. Awakening has quite a similar system, actually: people give up a part of their souls, and there's not loss there.

Edited by Kurkistan
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Yes, I concur with Kurk.  What makes heamlurgy end-negative is not the death of the donor, but the loss in magnitude of the power during transformation.  Dakhor (and other magics) would be end-negative if every time you used it it became at least a little bit weaker or you lost some potency with the magic or something along those lines. 

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Note that the catch with Dakhor might be finding people who are WILLING to sacrifice themselves. Doesn't seem like you can just use anyone, or else why would they spend a very powerful Dakhor monk for teleportation when they could have used an Arelon captive?

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I tend to disagree there. Dominion seems more about asserting your will over someone else. Willingly volunteering seems more like Devotion to me. Perhaps only Dakhor monks are capable of being used as fuel.

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Ah, but then we have Eric's lovely question from SpoCon:

 

Question: Are all magics on Sel their own individual systems, or are they different manifestations of the same system?

Answer: They are different manifestations of the same system.

Question: Are all magics on Sel influenced by both Devotion and Dominion?

Answer: Yes.

 

That means it is entirely plausible for the devotion and willingness of the monk as a sacrifice to be a key element in FjorDor.

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