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PerseusAvenger

Magic Systems and Hoid?

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Hello everyone! It's me again with another extremely confusing question for you or maybe I'm just dumb and it has been mentioned before but meh.

You might remember me from my previous question where I confused people by asking how duralumin interacts with higher metals?

Now I'm asking a different type of question. Namely about the magic systems instead. We know that what we call 'magic' is known as investiture in the cosmere. We also know that the way investiture manifests itself depends on the influence of shards. However, we also know that one of the most intriguing characters and coincidentally, my favourite character, has acquired numerous artifacts. As in the title, I mean Hoid. Check it out here https://coppermind.net/wiki/Hoid#Abilities

Back to my point. We have seen him use certain abilities that are not native to Roshar. However, remember me earlier saying that magic systems manifest themselves depending on the shard native to that world? In that case, how is Hoid able to use non-native magic? Ponder on in confusion and let me know what you think because honestly, this confuses the heck out of me.

Cheers!

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The magic systems themselves are created by the interactions between the investiture of a Shard and the worlds that they reside on... But the magic systems, in most cases, aren't bound to them. Just means of access. 

You need a spren to be a Surgebinder, and you can only get that in Roshar. You need to be an allomancer genetically, and for that you need heritage from allomantic bloodlines, the more recent the better chance. Taldain's seems to be a mixture of those two in that Sand Mastery is genetic and you need the Sand itself. Breath originates in Nalthians only, but can be gieven to anyone, and once you have it, it can be used to Awaken. 

The only magic that is locked to the world in terms of use are the varied Magics of Sel.

Edit: Multi ninja'd! 

Edited by Calderis
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I don't know enough of the specifics about the magic systems to say for sure why some transfer easier.  There seem to be a few ways magic gets trapped to a system.

Another thing worth noting is that investiture isn't just magic.  Investiture is like energy.  It makes all the magic, but also other things in the Cosmere.

Edited by Journey Before Pancakes
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Only some magic systems are tied to location.  The Metallic Arts (Allomancy, Feruchemy, Hemalurgy), for example, can be used anywhere in the Cosmere, not just on Scadrial.  In fact, I believe that the only location-dependent magic systems are the Sel-based ones (AonDoor, Forgery, etc.).  Once you gain the ability to use a particular magic system, you can use it anywhere.  

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2 hours ago, PerseusAvenger said:

We have seen him use certain abilities that are not native to Roshar. However, remember me earlier saying that magic systems manifest themselves depending on the shard native to that world? In that case, how is Hoid able to use non-native magic?

Magic systems develop naturally based on the World and the shardic influence.  So for example the metallic arts on scadrial are the way they are partly because they are on scadrial and partly because it was invested by Ruin and Preservation.  If there had been different shards or if those shard had invested a different planet, then the magic system would be different.  That's just a bit of clarification on how the magic systems form.

Access to the magic systems generally requires a connection with the shard and/or the world.  You can't be born an allomancer unless you are scadrian, and people bron n other worlds don't start out with a breath like Nalthians do.  However this connection can often be made artificially: lerasium can turn someone into a mistborn, regardless of where they were born, and anyone can receive a breath and start doing awakening.  once the connection is made and you have access to the magic system, that generally doesn't leave you, so you can still use that magic on other worlds (Sel is a big exception to this because of how its magic works - it doesnt travel well).  I'm being a bit vague and generic here, because the rules vary a little bit form system to system, but in general this is mostly correct.

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41 minutes ago, Calderis said:

The magic systems themselves are created by the interactions between the investiture of a Shard and the worlds that they reside on... But the magic systems, in most cases, aren't bound to them. Just means of access. 

You need a spren to be a Surgebinder, and you can only get that in Roshar. You need to be an allomancer genetically, and for that you need heritage from allomantic bloodlines, the more recent the better chance. Taldain's seems to be a mixture of those two in that Sand Mastery is genetic and you need the Sand itself. Breath originates in Nalthians only, but can be gieven to anyone, and once you have it, it can be used to Awaken. 

The only magic that is locked to the world in terms of use are the varied Magics of Sel.

Edit: Multi ninja'd! 

For what its worth, you seem to be sayign the same thing as I am, only probably worded a bit better.

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Most of the previous answers tell the story, but a little expansion.

Most magic systems(all?) write the ability into your spirit web. There are a variety of ways to go about this, some easier than others, breaths grant the ability to use them once you are given breaths, while allomancy either lerasium, genetics, or hemalurgy. The abilities are created by interactions between a Shard and a Shardworld, but once you get access to the ability it is in your spiritweb and generally not dependent on the shard or shardworld. So you can then use the ability anywhere as long as you have access to a source of power because the ability is written into you and not the planet. Exceptions apply, Radiants currently require contact with their spren to maintain their abilities, for instance.

Most magic systems we've seen so far either connect to a local source of power or directly to a shard. For instance, breath can be used anywhere because you're carrying the power with you. Surgebinging as long as you have access to stormlight. Sel magics require access to the Dor. Those are all location dependent because they're accessing the power source through the physical or cognitive realm where space-time applies. Others make a connection to a spiritual source. Allomancy connects directly to Preservation's spiritual well of power. Space doesn't apply in the spiritual realm, so location is irrelevant, so allomancy can be used as long as you have access to metal, which is required to forge the spiritual gateway to Preservation. 

Brandon has also hinted that some of the magic systems can be hacked to interact/power with others. For instance, Vasher/Zahel requires a breath per week, but has figured out how to substitute stormlight instead, which makes a much easier source. I also feel the need to point out that Sel is a bit more complicated then the others, due to the nature of the Dor. The Dor is located in the cognitive realm and has formed local connections with the land. The magic systems on Sel uses symbols as instructions in order to control the Dor. Metal serves the same purpose in Allomancy, with the chemical makeup of the metal determine what power comes out. But the Dor can only use local symbols. Go too far from the symbol's origins, and the Dor stops understanding them. Go to far from MaiPon and forgery stops working, even if you still have access to the Dor. So Sel requires that you have the ability, typically gained by being a local, that the Dor is around to power the ability, and that the Dor can understand the instructions. This is an excellent example of how complicated Brandon's magic systems are. You can make some general statements, but in order to truly understand them you have to break down each magic systems to figure out the rules.

As for Hoid, on Roshar he was observed to use awakening and allomancy. Awakening only requires that he have breaths on him(breaths grant the ability to use them and act as a local power source) and allomancy only requires metals to activate(direct spiritual connection to a shard, Harmony in this instance). 

Edited by Wandering Investor
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