Countermagic Shields can be cast to cover a variety of use cases, and can even be layered for additional protections. They also compliment many other magical defenses, including Antimagic
Shields, and even tyrellium shielding
. Shielding spells are channeled spells, requiring the caster to either directly expend Imperium
to maintain the shield or else augment their channel requirements with Rune Magic
Magical defense against physical objects requires Physical Shields to create a magical barrier through which physical items cannot pass. These shields are also useful for defending against the physical effects of enchanted items, as well as preventing the passage of objects and elements animated through the use of magic. As an example, a fully functional physical shield will stop an enchanted Electromancy sword
from passing through the barrier, but its lightning effects will pass through unimpeded.
Magic Deflection and Reflection
Unlike physical shield spells, spellwork to shield against magic is built around the deflection or reflection of the spells cast against it. Magical energy is merely weakened by physical barriers, even magical ones, if those barriers pose any resistance at all. A proper shield must therefore harness the nature of magic and use it against itself to hold any significant effects.
Magical shieldwork cannot deflect or reflect enchanted items, although it may weaken or deflect the enchantments themselves depending upon their nature. A sword enchanted with Electromancy
may find its lightning will arc along the shield rather than follow its programming, while a guided arrow
may find itself sluggish to react to movement of its quarry once passing through a shield, but otherwise unimpacted. Spells cast directly at a functional shield will not be able to penetrate. Mages casting spells which merely direct a physical object in some manner, such as an Anemancy
spell cast to cause a tornado, will find their direct control over the object or objects is removed once it passes through the barrier but the objects themselves will continue to follow the patterns dictated by their current traits, including momentum.
Magic Deflection Shields require more Imperium
to power than their Lithaelexy
counterparts, but they do not require the placement of equipment and are therefore portable, and more spontaneously available. They are more discrete and therefore more useful for covert shielding efforts, especially when intended as defense against Psychic
Magics. Magic Shielding also maintains lower Imperium requirements than an Antimagic
Shield, which would dispel any spells and suppress all effects of enchanted objects entering the shield, but at a cost of Imperium equal to that required to cast the spells it dissipates and the channeled spells it suppresses.
Magical Shields are not effective in all situations, however. Due to the nature of certain magics such as Amphikinetics
or Psychic Magic
, magic shields will not stop the spellwork from penetrating. In these cases preventative Cleansing Magic
is recommended to bolster the defenses of each individual to be protected.
Phased Shielding protects against items and individuals from the higher dimensions through the use of harmonic spiritual resonance. The shield of choice is set to vibrate at the mortal spiritual frequency, plus an additional higher complimentary spiritual frequency, causing a resonance which in turn allows the shield to perform its function against not only the chosen spiritual planes but also all spiritual frequencies between them. This is a feature of spiritual frequency first discovered through the manufacture of Demonsbane
, then later adapted for shieldwork.
The phased nature of the shield requires either a Physical or Magical Shield as its framework, with the higher spiritual frequency woven into the shield spell of choice. Physical shields are used more frequently in this manner, as they protect from items manufactured with materials from the higher planes, as well as ghosts and Necromantic
Phasing. Occasionally Phased Magic Shields are desired, most often to defend against demon
attacks, but this is usually in conjuction with Phased Physical Shields rather than in place of them. A caster must have at least a basic knowledge of the application of the Necromantic Phasing to cast this type of shield.
Layered and Hybrid Shielding
While each type of shield only protects against one potential type of threat, they can be layered for additional protection. In most cases these would be cast as separate, unique shields, but with practice a caster can learn to weave several Shielding spells together to form a single cohesive shield which will protect against multiple damage sources. These shields are weaker, as each damage type used against them will also weaken the whole rather than damaging only its corresponding damage shield, but its lower Imperium
cost ensures it remains a viable option.