compass

Of all the survival tools at your disposal, the simple compass comes second only to your own skills and common sense.
Arcturian survival instructor
  A simple magnetic compass will always point south on the Plane of Fillimet, allowing an individual to orient themselves to travel in the desired direction. More experienced navigators have also learned to use the compass in conjunction with other tools to determine their position in addition to their alignment.  

Specialized Compasses

Finding Compass

It's not even a real compass! My parents had it enchanted to point to their house so I could "always find my way home." But how can I navigate with... this?
— fledgling game warden to her mentor
A magnetic compass is not always a sufficient tool for the job at hand. In planes without a magnetic field, or for users without the needed orientation skills, a Finding Compass has proven to be a more valuable tool. These compasses use Rune Magic to point to a static landmark, allowing the user to either travel directly towards that landmark or orient themselves based upon its location. As a result they do require periodic maintenance to recharge the runes.   Finding compasses are especially popular in the plane of Rol'na, as its magnetic fields are not stable enough to provide reliable navigation. Here the compasses point to the headquarters of the Portal Exchange.  

Metacompass

And to my beloved Tallie, I leave the Metacompass. May it guide your travels, and your research.
Goldaming Documents of Inheritance
The rarest and most valuable of all compass varieties due to the uncommon skills required for its manufacture, Metacompasses align their needle based upon the Magical Fields of Fillimet. Simple versions are attuned to only one of the fields, while the best can be set to the user's choice of field. The highest quality Metacompasses are enchanted in such a way that most maintenance can be performed by any Rune Mage, as the Metamagic runes can be enchanted to draw their power from the other runes.   Due to their value it is quite common for a Metacompass to remain within a family, passed down and maintained through the generations.

Manufacturing process

Any Metalsmith can craft a basic compass, provided they have access to the proper materials. A magnetized needle is simply affixed to a spindle where it can freely spin, such that on the Plane of Fillimet it will always point south.   A sturdy compass will enclose the needle and spindle in a magnetically neutral casing with the needle kept behind a clear covering such as glass. On fancier models markings are carefully arranged along the periphery of the clear covering, or behind the needle and spindle arrangement, to allow the user a more accurate assessment of their location.  

You can certainly try your luck elsewhere, but if you need a Metacompass built to those specifications... Well, I'm the only one this side of the Portals with the skills to do it. And my quality doesn't come cheap.
Metamagic Rune Mage
  The uncommon Finding Compasses require an advanced understanding of Rune Magic to construct. The rare Metacompasses add the requirement of an innate Metamagic capability to detect Magical Fields, a unique genetic ability inaccessible to the majority of the population.

Significance

Compasses remain a critical tool for any traveler, from the tough game wardens of the wilderness to the prosperous merchants of the trade routes. The standard compass also serves as a critical navigational component when sailing, while Metacompasses have become a necessity among scientists researching the Magical Fields and their impacts on life in Fillimet.

Item type
Navigational Aid / Instrument
Related Technologies
Rarity
Common
Rune Magic
Technology / Science | May 29, 2020

The discovery of runes allowed everyday objects to be enchanted to perform basic magical tasks that would otherwise require a mage to actively cast. This greatly improved the everyday comfort of the general populace.

Metamagic
Technology / Science | Aug 11, 2020

Metamagic is an innate understanding and feel for the inner workings of magic. Rarest of the branches of magic, it is available only to those who are already attuned to its secrets.



Cover image: Compass by Cherise Evertz

Comments

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Grandmaster Serukis
Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull
14 Aug, 2020 00:15

I love how you've taken a mundane object and lifted it/shaped it to your own world. The quotes peppered throughout really add to it too. I love that they always point south, too!

Emy x
14 Aug, 2020 04:55

Thank you! I love to play with the everyday and see how ir might morph on a high fantasy setting. So glad you enjoy it too!   And I *had* to make them point south. I am actually really looking forward to playing with the reasons why!

Author of Fillimet, bright fantasy land of possibilities
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