Charm Concept: Material and Immaterial

Immaterial beings are invisible and intangible to the material world, but they may spend one mote or one temporary Willpower to become visible and audible (though still obviously immaterial to all viewers) for the remainder of the scene. Immaterial objects the immaterial beings carry likewise become visible and audible. Structures such as floors and walls support an immaterial being’s weight only so long as the being does not will itself to pass through them—an immaterial knife can rest on the material second floor of a two-storey building, but will pass through the material wall of the same building if thrown by an immaterial creature. Use common sense when adjucating this.

Immaterial creatures are not as affected by the bodily needs of the material world. Immaterial creatures do not require air to breath or food or water. They can still appreciate these things for their virtues but no longer need them to survive. (And most spirits never need those things anyway.)

As follows, immaterial creatures do not affect the material world without powerful Charms designed to do so. Most of an immaterial creature’s Charms will not affect the material world.

A creature that dematerializes may bring along objects it owns (as defined in Exalted, on p. 238) and can carry. Unattended immaterial objects do not materialize alongside their owners and, if left unattended for more than a fortnight, fall under the domain of Madame Marthesine of the Lost and her hoarders (see pp. 55-56 and 47). Hoarders sometimes attempt to claim immaterial objects before that time limit is up.

Many relatively common effects, such as thaumaturgical wards, can interact with immaterial beings, and places that have access to a decent thaumaturge can force immaterial beings to materialize if they wish to enter warded places. See The Books of Sorcery, Vol. III—Oadenol’s Codex, pages 140–144, for the Art of Spirit Beckoning and the Art of Warding and Exorcism.

Naturally material creatures that dematerialize must concern themselves with their location in the real world, because an immaterial being that materializes in a place where it cannot normally survive will die. In other words, an immaterial Eclipse Caste forced to materialize while walking straight through, say, a wall or a mountain will indeed be gruesomely killed as the wall splits her apart or the mountain instantly crushes her.

There are realms in which the chasm of the material does not exist, and nothing can dematerialize. Everyone and everything in the Underworld, Malfeas and the Celestial City of Yu-Shan is considered material.

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