In the Chronicles of Darkness, some humans have a chance to become something more. They have a chance to understand the world like never before. They travel to the Realms Supernal, and return Awakened. These Awakened people are called Mages, or the Wise. They are the protagonists of Mage: The Awakening.
A group of mages is called a cabal.
- Main article: Awakening (MTAw)
Mages are formed during a process referred to as the Awakening. Each Awakening is unique, and what triggers it is yet unexplored. Mages are usually drawn into the Supernal through their own obsessions with Mysteries that reveal to them a way through the Lie. On their way, they establish a symbolic connection to the realm they awakened to, in most cases by carving their name into a gigantic Watchtower.
Powers and Abilities
- Main article: Magic (MTAw)
There are five Watchtowers, and each exist in one of five Supernal Realms. Each one influences the Arcana a mage can use. Those who Awaken to the Watchtower of the Golden Key are Obrimos, to the Watchtower of Iron Gauntlet are Mastigos, to the Watchtower of the Lead Coin are Moros, to the Watchtower of the Lunargent Thorn are Acanthus, and to the Watchtower of the Singing Stone are Thyrsus.
Magic is the power to impose one's will onto reality and is divided into ten Arcana. These are Death, Fate, Forces, Life, Matter, Mind, Prime, Space, Spirit, and Time. Each Path has two Ruling Arcana and one Inferior Arcanum. As mages develop their Arcana, they gain special attainments that show his growing power by transforming him. The total advancement of a mage's understanding of Magic is referred to as Gnosis.
As mages grow into their new role, they find that they are constantly aware of the underlying symbolism of the Supernal within the world. This is referred to as Mage Sight. In order to not allow his magic to overwhelm him, Mages cling to the code of Wisdom, to protect them against Hubris.
- Main article: Legacy (MTAw)
As a mage grows and advances in the Mysteries, he can shape his soul to express his own specific view of magic and its form. Doing so grants the Mage additional Attainment as he advances in his Legacy.
- Main article: Order (MTAw)
After Awakening a mage will most likely join one of the five Pentacle Orders. These Orders are the Adamantine Arrow, the Mysterium, the Guardians of the Veil, the Silver Ladder, and the Free Council. Each one has an opposing philosophy, but struggle together against the three other groups: the Seers of the Throne, who are servants of the Exarchs, the Banishers, mages who wish to kill all mages, and the Mad, mages whose Awakening has driven them insane. Other remain Apostates.