The magical energy that lies dormant in everything and everyone, Mana is the energy drawn upon in order to execute all spells.
Everyone has some small amount of magical energy and prowess within them, and by training oneself in its use and execution, a magus can become an adept user of mana in many or one specific form.
Uses of ManaEdit
Mana has many applications, and as such, an incredible variety of styles. Some of the most popular uses are:
Tapping upon the life force that mana contains, fighters can use mana to heal themselves and their allies, an invaluable skill for any team. Those who learn to heal usually learn other defensive skills as well, and generally act more as support units. Healing Spell is the most common form of this, with more advanced forms being skills like Regeneration and Healing Hands.
Utilizing mana's ability to create and strengthen, a magus can create barriers and other means of protection, allowing allies to take more of a beating. The most basic protective spell is Barrier, a skill even learned by more brawler-based fighters, though more advanced forms include Arch Angel and Sanctuary Spell.
By weaponizing the massive energy of mana, some magi use magic to destroy their foes and enemies. Some attack using pure magic, performing attacks like Magic Meteor or Magic Laser, others attack by interfering with the natural world for attacks such as Chain Lightning, while still others use magic to amplify or extend physical attacks, creating attacks like Eruption Uppercut and Sword Beam.
Manipulating within an object (or person) allows casters to change the very makeup of matter. The most well known form of this magic is that utilized by st0pnsw0p, known as Alchemy, a school which enables its user to permanently combine, refine, and enchant objects by spending mana. Notably, most forms of matter-manipulation magic seem to be temporary, as illustrated by Iron Skin and Increase Density.
Before being able to cast any spell of any school, a would-be magus must first gather mana through some means. There are two primary areas from which to draw mana: from within oneself and from the outside world.
The vast majority of magi draw mana from the environment in order to perform their spells. By opening one's mind and Magic Circuits to the outside world, it is possible to simply drain free-floating mana from the surrounding area to quickly fill one's Circuits. Drawing Mana from the environment allows a supply of energy only limited by the mana intake and output of the caster, but too many magi drawing on the environment at once may quickly interfere with each other and reduce their overall effectiveness. Notable users of environmental Mana include Impromptu, Aeront, and Luigiguy78.
Some magi, rather than drawing power from the environment, instead force Mana out of their own body. The human body naturally generates some Mana even in the case that the human in question has little to no magical potential, so almost anyone has the ability to use this style of Mana generation and storage. However, pushing oneself too far and attempting to generate Mana beyond one's limits causes a severe drain on the body's ability to function, inflicting Fatigued Status, HP loss, and possibly even Maiming the user in extreme cases. As a result, generating excess mana from one's own body is usually only used to jump-start or enhance the user's absorption of environmental mana, as in the case of Luigiguy78. Notable users of self-generated Mana alone include Meta-Mind and Zeldamaster2.
Some characters, such as Aquinas, apparently use systems other than mana to execute their special abilities. However, these systems function in the same way as mana, and still use the Charged Magic Circuits status to indicate once the user in question has charged an attack. As such, the difference between these systems and mana are mostly cosmetic.