Some terms in Academagia might be unclear to new people. They are mentioned here with an explanation of what they mean.
Note that fixed expressions tend to be capitalized in the game interface as well as in this Wiki, as categorizing articles by them is the only way of structuring the huge content of the game.
To an English speaker, this might seem a bit like "legalese", in which terms are defined at the beginning and then capitalized throughout to indicate they are used in this specific meaning.
Check out other Guides (or try for a Live Chat) if questions persist.
Generally, as within the game itself, assume that the Wiki's use of "you", "your", etc. is in reference to the Player Character.
Adventures & Events
Every Adventure or Event consists of story text punctuated by Attribute/Skill checks ("Rolls", see below) where you have a limited selection of attempts to resolve the situation you find yourself in. Successful rolls often earn a Skill Step and failed rolls often increase Stress or decrease Vitality, but there are exceptions on both sides and various other outcomes.
Adventures are entered via Choose Action - Adventure from the Calendar drop-down menu, then (in Confirmation Orders, with two more drop-down menus under the 'Adventure' entry) selecting a starting Location (from those of which your student has been Informed) and picking from the list of Adventures available (based on the current date, your College, your Classes and your Relationships).
Some Adventures are introduced automatically as the game progresses, like Request a Meeting with your Mentor. Also, each of your fellow students has their own personal Adventure, unlocked when your Relationship with them passes a certain threshold.
A Random Event is checked for every day.* The chance can be raised or lowered by certain variables, spells or abilities. For example, some Locations which can be chosen for your activities will raise or lower this chance (see "Character's Room" when listed under Confirmation Orders after you have selected a day's activities).
Holiday Events happen automatically on certain days, like Fool's Day at the end of the second month. These function just like Random Events - the only difference is that the chance of occurring is always 100%.*
Events tend to be very short and never use up an Action, whereas some Adventures can take a week or more to finish, even if you return to them every day! (To be clear, the outcome of a Random Event may put you in the Infirmary for the following day, which is generally considered a tragic waste of time, but an Event itself, while it is happening, never "consumes" any time in your schedule).
At the very beginning of your first year, all of these can be very frustrating, as you have few skills and next to no magic to command (how on earth am I to know about Architecture?!?), so you are likely to get a bad ending and lose some Vitality or incur Stress. Later on, they will be a welcome addition to your day as you can collect some extra Skill Steps, Items or other benefits.
*Except when you are Sick! (see Stress and Vitality, below)
The plural is boni, it's Latin! Same for malus and mali. No Dog Latin in this Wiki.
While the in-game text can be rather unclear as to what it means by "increase", Bonus is usually a clearer term. What a Bonus should be understood to mean is a better chance of success on an Action or Skill check of the type mentioned.
When you select the things you want to do on a day in the Calendar, you have 4 options:
- Choose Action
- Cast Spell
- Use Item
- Use Ability
Discerning what of the above an activity constitutes is mandatory for understanding the game or this Wiki. They are also fixed expressions for editing in this Wiki.
For example, you can have Befriend referring to the Skill, and Befriend (Action) referring to the Action of enticing someone to join your Clique. Or there is Anecdote (Ability), so you know where to look in the interface and know you will benefit from boni for Abilities for this activity.
Chance of Discovery
This shows a percentile chance of being caught by Instructors (and therefore Reprimanded) if you have no Visitation Rights. Can be modified by various effects and variables, always including the stats of the Location itself. Note the distinction: this is listed as a Location statistic, but it has nothing to do with "discovering" the Location itself (for more information on this, see Explore).
Chance of Success
Chance of Success is how likely or not likely you are to succeed at Abilities, Actions, specific Actions (such as Pray), Spells, or Everything.
- Also referred to as CoS (not to be confused with a giant hole under a school)
Green: Automatic success
Blue: Good chance at success
Black: Even chance at success
Red: Poor chance of success
Purple: Only achievable through sheer, undeserved luck (possibly obtained by use of observation, perception, character study, or a similar skill)
Note that in the menu of available Adventures, a green entry does not mean that your student will automatically succeed at every step - it simply means that it is possible to reach the end of that episode without getting stuck.
There also is a separate Chance of Failure.
Ways to influence CoS:
Whenever you are Reprimanded (see below), one activity slot per week will be scheduled for Detention with the Instructor who reprimanded you. The standard result of each session is that you will gain one Skill Step in a Subskill chosen randomly from the unique list given for the specific Instructor.
Can be a bit confusing. Either refers to how long inferred boni will stay OR if those gains are permanent by nature (Expand) then it refers to how long the "wait period" for the activity is (until you can choose it again).
Duration is given in "action cycles", where 2 cycles represent 1 slot in the Calendar. So Duration:6 = 1 day, Duration:42 = 7 days.
This indicates a permanent improvement (or loss, if negative) to a Skill, Study Level, Stress, Vitality, Relationship, Parental Approval or Attribute.
Can be a negative value. This can, adding an extra quirk, again be positive, if pertaining to Stress or Chance of Discovery. Expand Stress -1 is a good thing!
In-game text can be confusing about the "loss" of Skill Steps as well. Usually as a result of a failed Skill check in an Adventure or Event, you may be told that your student loses a Skill Step. However, this cannot affect any Skill Level that has already been completed, so it only actually has an effect when the Subskill in question already has one or more Skill Steps building towards the next Level.
Actions, Spells and Abilities are categorized as
- hostile, if they harm enemies (damage Vitality, increase Stress, decrease Attributes or Skills)
- beneficial, if they avail you or someone else something good (decrease Stress, add boni)
- social, if they change the level of Relationship between you and other persons, or between other persons
Some activities fit into more than one category. Some categories have sub-categories like beneficial - Parental Approval.
You gain a temporary increase to that Skill, Study Level, Relationship, Parental Approval or Attribute, make good use of it before it's gone again.
This is "buffing" your abilities so you can succeed at rolls you otherwise have no or poor chances of tackling. Stack buffs, if necessary. Use for Exams.
Increases can have a negative value, making them actually a malus instead of a bonus, or a "debuff".
The closest synonym for this as an in-game technical word is "unlock". It can apply to almost every aspect of the game: most generally, a result of
- Inform _____
means that the Student becomes aware that "_____" exists, or that _____ becomes more accessible somehow. The more specific meaning depends on the type of subject:
- Item: you now have a working understanding of that Item - whether or not you have ever seen or acquired such a thing. The effect may require a reload, but you should now see the entire entry (description, related activity and statistics) for this Item whenever you click on its name. Most Items cannot be Used (perhaps even equipped) before you have been Informed about them.
- Location: the Student now knows how to find that place. (Just don't forget about Chance of Discovery, unless you also have Visitation Rights ...)
- Lore: this piece of Lore is now added to your collection (accessed with the Lore button on the 'pocket-watch').
- Pheme/Spell: assuming minimum requirements are met, you can now attach/cast this Pheme/Spell.
- Skill: any Skill that is Informed before being trained, studied, or otherwise increased will appear in the Skills list of your Character window with a Level of 0. The main significance of this is that sometimes you get to select a Skill (e.g. to Expand it), and the drop-down menu available for this choice will only include Skills you already 'know' - even at Level 0.) Note also that a Parent Skill is 'Informed' the instant you raise or unlock any one of its Subskills - but this does not include the other Subskills that you have not learned yet.
- Student: you are now essentially "tracking" this NPC! You will receive a report about their activity at the end of every day, and details such as their Skill Levels and Clique Ability are revealed under their character entry (accessed from clicking on linked names or through the Clique or Relations button on the 'pocket-watch'.)
Note that there is no such result as "Inform [Instructor]". For one thing, you already know they're almost all turning up to teach courses most of the time - and shepherd wayward Students through Detention some of the rest of the time ...
There is more than one way to "discover" some things in the game; if you are already 'Informed' of something and you get an Inform result for the exact same thing, it has no (known) additional effect.
Locations are where you can do things in the game, either by selecting an Ability (Active) involving the Location, or by choosing that Location as the place to perform an Action, Spell, or Item usage (which applies the Passive Ability for that Location).
Locations can be excellent for availing multiple benefits in the same time slot, or by buffing certain Skills or Abilities, so you can perform things you otherwise couldn't.
Also see above, Chance of Discovery.
The "building blocks" of Spells. You need to know all Phemes listed in the "Phemes" part of a Spell's description to be able to cast it.
You can add extra Phemes to a spell that requires a Roll. The Spell Type determines how Phemes interact. When you add additional Phemes to a Spell or an Enchantment, if they are of Opposition Types, they will cancel each other out.
The "Magnitude" shows how powerfully they will do so.
A level within [-10,0,10] for each Student or Instructor. See below "Students, Instructors and Relationship".
This is a negative result of either being discovered in an off-limits Location, or failing a specific Roll during an Adventure or Event. When you see that you have been reprimanded, it always means the Instructor who delivered that reprimand will be responsible for your weekly Detention until he/she is satisfied you have been "corrected". See above, Chance of Discovery and Detention.
This mostly applies to Skill tests in Adventures and Events, and casting most Spells (with any attached Phemes adding to the difficulty).
To succeed, a roll value of (Skill + (random value from 0 up to 2) * Attribute)) should exceed Difficulty. Or, in contested Rolls, higher than your Target's roll, sometimes using a different Attribute-Skill pair.
See Rolls (Guide) for information about Rerolls, Contested Rolls, etc.
If you're wondering what the colours mean regarding your choices (and their rolls), see Chance of Success.
Each of the 54 Parent Skills consists of 3-7 Subskills. The Parent Skill's Level is determined by the lowest of its three [highest] Subskill Levels. (I.e., if there are more than 3 Subskills, only the three highest values are relevant: having a 0 in any of the remaining Subskills will not tank the Parent Skill Level.
A Skill can level from 0 ("informed" but still untrained) to a standard maximum of 10, but may rise even higher due to various pursuits and incidents.
A Subskill must be known ("informed") to show up in your student's list of Skills, even at Skill Level "0"; a single informed or raised Subskill will Inform its Parent Skill.
- Some Skills are known automatically (like School Survival or your [[Category:Courses|Courses).
- Others are made known to you by raising some other Skill, getting a Skill Step in a new Subskills by an activity, as part of an Adventure or Event, or buying/getting certain Items.
- In particular, attempting to use an 'unknown' Skill that shows up as an option in an Adventure/Event will Inform you of it even if you (almost certainly) fail the Roll. This can actually be helpful, if followed up with any Action/Activity that allows a choice of Expand Subskill.
- Some activities (like Joie de Vivre or Study at the Library of Longshade) give you random Skill Steps. This could be anything, known or unknown, even Mastery and Gates. If the skill is specified in the description by the Parent Skill, it will be randomly from that Skill's Subskills, even if you are not informed about it.
Skills need a certain amount of Skill Steps (SS) to advance to the next level, determined by (a) the dominant Attribute, (b) the Level you've already reached, and (c) the complexity of the Subskill.
- For example, Revision Spells, Numerology, Decipher Handwriting, Harpsichord, Concentration, and so on require at least two SS even to get from Level 0 to 1, unless your dominant Attribute is exceptionally high.
- Note that when gaining 2 or more Skill Steps for a Subskill at one time, any in excess of the total for reaching the next Skill Level are wasted. There is an exception when receiving multiple, individual Expansions on one occasion, such as "Expand three random Incantation Subskills by one SS", if the same Subskill is randomly determined more than once (and 1 Step is enough for at least 1 Level in that Subskill).
Spells are magic you cast either at yourself or on a Target (or by context in Adventures and Events, but these have nothing to do with the mechanics of the "Cast a Spell" activity). Some spells can only be directed at targets during a Duel.
To be able to cast a Spell, you have to know all its Phemes. This is not automatic, so (e.g.) just training your Negation Spells Subskill will do you little good if the necessary Phemes are unlocked by other Negation Subskills; some Phemes for a certain 'school' of Spell are unlocked under entirely different Parent/Study Skills or even unlocked by a particular Adventure.
If you cast a base Spell as a Calendar Activity (which already includes all necessary Phemes), it's either automatic or the Roll is specified in the Spell's description. For additional effects you may add Phemes to the Spell; each will raise the difficulty of the Casting Roll by a certain amount, given in the Pheme's Description "Difficulty" - anything from +2 to +8.
Note that Spells requiring no rolls cannot have Phemes added to them in this way. You can still buff your casting abilities by other activities, a relevant choice of Location, or previously-cast Spells still in effect.
Casting Spells in a Duel is slightly different - you have to add each Pheme to your Palette as required by the Spell. You can add extra Phemes to it as well, if you wish, with the same adjustments to Difficulty.
An added Pheme shares the Duration of the Spell it was attached to.
Your Maximum Stress Level is determined by your Fitness Attribute x2, with some possible modifications (several Character Creation options, Clique Abilities, and the effects of various Spells and activities).
If you go over that level you will spend the next day - all three activity slots! - on bed rest, with no opportunity to hone your skills and plot towards world dominance.
Stress is one of three values in the game where "high" means "bad".
Expand Stress +1 is bad, Expand Stress (-1) is good. (In general - however, there are certain Emotions which benefit from accumulated Stress and are lost if it falls below their threshold.)
Read the article about Stress for more info.
Vitality is also determined by your Fitness Attribute x2, barring some other factors. Here, you have a positive value to start with, that may be decreased by bungled Adventures, Events or activities, or by Hostile Actions, most notably Philippe Marchant "slipping the leash" on his Familiar.
Reducing your Vitality to "0" will also make you lose a full day.
- The Action:Rest (per default what's on the Calendar for evenings, weekends, and holidays) resets Stress to your personal minimum and Vitality to maximum - note that it can be a wise use of a single activity slot, rather than risking a Random Event that may spoil 3 of them!
Students, Instructors, Relationships
These are your fellow pupils in the seven Colleges, and the adults who are (supposedly) in charge of the Academagia. ("Instructors" includes Professors who aren't teaching any first-year courses: Legate Orso Orsi and two of the College Regents.) You have a Relationship with each of them, with a value between -10 and 10.
All Relationships begin at 0, except that a few positive points will be scattered randomly among the students of your chosen College - and quite a few Character Creation options will add other early adjustments (especially Friendship backgrounds).
Activities that affect Relationship levels are mostly for either Students (e.g. Goof off With Collegemates) or Instructors (e.g. Curry Favor) - only some Actions/Abilities affect both (most rarely, a random individual from either group). The effect can be for one or more individuals, and either chosen or randomly determined.
Some activities affect only Relationships with Students who are neutral (0), friendly (e.g. >3), or hostile (e.g. <-4) or of the Opposite Gender of your Character.
How knowledgeable you are about a subject (as opposed to how trained you are), on a scale of 0 to 10.
You can Study only the six Courses you are currently Enrolled in; the closest thing you can do for any other Skill is to pursue it as a Research Topic. (Which you can also do with your class subjects
The maximum value for Study Level is 10; this limit is not expandable, though there are temporary buffs.
See Exams: A Guide for more.