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In Mage: the Ascension, a Wonder is a background that represents one of several different magical items. Each type of item has an alternate name that is used by Awakened Technocrats.

  • Artifacts (and Inventions) which can only be used by mages and utilize their user's Arete rating, and typically only do a few things. Some artifacts have a single permanent effect that they do instead, and these artifacts may be used by sleepers.
  • Charms (and Gadgets) are expendable magic items. They are made in bundles rather than as individual items. Sleepers may use charms if doing so would be compatible with their paradigm.
  • Fetishes are made with Spirit instead of Prime, and involve bargaining with spirits to manufacture. The Garou and other changing breeds look askance at the fetishes of the Awakened, especially in cases where the mage forced the spirit into the fetish instead of earning its cooperation via chiminage.
  • Periapts (and Matrices), also called Soulgems, hold Quintessence of a particular Resonance.
  • Talismans (and Devices) are magical items that even sleepers can use, as they have their own Arete rating; they can typically do several things, and many have attached periapts. Their creation requires Willpower expenditure, however.
  • Grimoires (and Principiae) can increase Arete without a Seeking, and require spending 1 permanent dot of Willpower, but copies can be made without spending Willpower.
  • Primers are special grimoires/principiae that teach Arete 1 – that is to say, then can cause Awakening. These require two permanent dots of Willpower to make.
  • Tomes are also special grimoires that describe rare and powerful rotes, allowing to decrease their difficulty.
  • Amulets (and Gizmos) are items with "sleeping" magic in them, which is activated in stated circumstances. They are made with Time and/or Entropy.
  • Relics are living Wonders. This subtype is additional to some other: Relic Talisman, Relic Periapt (also called Soulflower), etc.

Prior to Mage: The Ascension Revised Edition, the Wonder Background did not exist. In earlier editions, the Talisman Background covered not only Talismans but all of the other magical items that were collectively classified as Wonders in Revised Edition. Grimoires and Primers were later introduced in Forged by Dragon's Fire. Amulets were mentioned in passing in Storytellers Companion, and Tomes were introduced in The Red Sign.