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The Hero of Ages Annotations ()
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Brandon Sanderson

The Inquisitor's Speed

What the Inquisitor does here at the end is very important. If you've read book two recently, you may recognize this as what Sazed did when he tapped speed at the end of that book.

The Inquisitors are gaining Feruchemical powers, which makes them very, very dangerous. Mixing Feruchemy and Allomancy is what made the Lord Ruler so formidable. Fortunately, it took him a long time to figure out how to mix the powers correctly, and the Inquisitors haven't had the time to practice, regardless of the force controlling them.

General Reddit 2020 ()
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Yoitsthew

Would a Lerasium/Atium alloy create a Feruchemist, rather than an atium misting?? What with the way that it’s an alloy of god metals, and the way that lerasium can be used to acquire other magics? As far as I know there is no lerasium left currently, so this one is also just for my curiosity!!

Brandon Sanderson

You can use the god metals from Scadrial to make a Feruchemist, but I have to RAFO the actual means.

Shadows of Self Lansing signing ()
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Questioner

Say you have a Feruchemist who pours Identity into a metalmind. Then subsequently loses that mind, and then is later Awakened? Would that mind retain the personality of--

*Everyone laughs, Scottish man says "it's 11 o'clock at night, give the man a break!"*

Brandon Sanderson

Okay, so they store Identity—which I haven't told you what it does--

Questioner

Yep. We don't know.

Brandon Sanderson

And then you Awaken it, and then you want to know if it has the personality of the person?

Questioner

Yeah, or if it's able to communicate in any way.

Brandon Sanderson

Um, if-- how much Awakened is it? Is it Nightblood-level Awakened? Or is it just regular Awakened?

Questioner

Sure let's say Nightblood-level.

Brandon Sanderson

Nightblood-level. So it's-- so the Investiture has been granted sapience. And it's got Investiture from somebody else stuffed in it. I can foresee a scenario where that has an influence, but it's not going to be the personality of the person who stuffed it in. I can see some circumstances where they can-- where the Investiture of the object can make use of that in some way, but...

Oh boy, that was a weird one.

Bands of Mourning release party ()
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Questioner

Is there a comparable way-- like you can become a Misting by burning an alloy of lerasium and some other metal--

Brandon Sanderson

Yes.

Questioner

Is there a comparable way of becoming a Ferring?

Brandon Sanderson

Uh… *carefully* Comparable within certain limits of the definition of that word, then yes.

Questioner

Just meaning, is there some in-world way--

Brandon Sanderson

There is some in-world procedure yes.

Tor.com Q&A with Brandon Sanderson ()
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Maru Nui

What does aluminum do in Feruchemy? What does malatium do in Hemalurgy?

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO. We'll be releasing a chart eventually that includes all of the powers. I don't want to speak until I have everything nailed down exactly the way I want.

Stormlight Three Update #5 ()
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Tehdren

For instance, a person's spiritual component knows how old they are.

Wow. Has this been talked about before? This kind of seems like a big tidbit. Now we have some idea of how Hoid changes his age?

Brandon Sanderson

I haven't said if this is a method Hoid uses or not, but it's part of the reason the Lord Ruler turned to dust when he lost his metalminds. (His body tried to match the age his spirit said he was.)

Phantine

If they somehow killed the Lord Ruler in a conventional manner, would he still have turned to dust?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. The metalminds would have stopped being tapped, and the spirit of the matter would probably still have had this strange effect. Not it didn't happen to the bodies of the shard vessels who died.

Phantine

Would koloss spikes turn off when they die too, so dead ones shrivel up like raisins?

Brandon Sanderson

Hemalurgy changes the spirit. So not necessarily.

Orem signing ()
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Questioner

So, Miles Hundredlives. If you were to spike his Allomantic gold out of him, would that change his Identity such that he could no longer access his metalminds?

Brandon Sanderson

That would not necessarily change his Identity, but it would change his Investiture. So if you took off the piece of his soul that could do Allomancy, and then gave him his metalminds. Well, no... No, this is more complicated than I was assuming. So you're saying if someone took away his ability to do Allomancy, could he still access his Feruchemy metalminds. Yes he could. He could still do that. That should work just fine. 

Questioner

Do the metalminds kind of have a pointer to his Identity, they don't have a copy of his Identity that they're keyed to? 

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah... he is still him unless you spike him and do something with the Identity specifically. 

Questioner

So you could potentially steal his Identity.

Brandon Sanderson

That strays into RAFO territory, so we'll go ahead and give you a RAFO card. But simply taking it away would not change his Identity to the point that it would prevent-- Good question. Very detailed.

Stormlight Three Update #5 ()
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Iceblade44

So White Sand [then Elantris] is earlier... Then how the heck old is Khriss then? Will we ever get an answer as to why every worldhopper is flippin' immortal?

Brandon Sanderson

There is some time-dilation going on. I'll explain it eventually; we're almost to the point where I can start talking about that. Suffice it to say that there's a mix of both actual slowing of the aging process and relative time going on, depending on the individual. Very few are actually immortal.

Faera

Implying that some are actually immortal? :D

Brandon Sanderson

Depends on which definition of immortal you mean.

Doesn't age, but can be killed by conventional means. (You've seen some of these in the cosmere, but I'll leave you to discuss who.)

Heals from wounds, but still ages. (Knights Radiant with Stormlight are like this.)

Reborn when killed. (The Heralds.)

Doesn't age and can heal, but dependent upon magic to stay this way, and so have distinct weakness to be exploited. (The Lord Ruler, among others.)

Hive beings who are constantly losing individual members, but maintaining a persistent personality spread across all of them, immortal in that as long as too much of the hive isn't wiped out, the personality can persist. (The Sleepless.)

Bits of sapient magic, eternal and endless, though the personality can be "destroyed" in specific ways. (Seons. Spren. Nightblood. Cognitive Shadows, like a certain character from Scadrial.)

Shards (Really just a supercharged version of the previous category.)

And then, of course, there's Hoid. I'm not going to say which category, if any, he's in.

Some of these blend together--the Heralds, for example, are technically a variety of Cognitive Shadow. I'm not saying each of these categories above are distinct, intended to be the end-all definitions. They're off the cuff groupings I made to explain a point: immortality is a theme of the cosmere works--which, at their core, are experiments on what happens when men are given the power of deity.

Shagomir

Heals from wounds, but still ages.

Would Bloodmaker Ferrings exist in this category as well? If not, what about someone Compounding Gold?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, you are correct.

Shagomir

As a Bloodmaker ages, what keeps them from healing the damage and carrying on as a very old, but very healthy person? Do they come to a point where they can't store enough health to stave off the aches, pains, diseases, and other things that come with old age?

This makes sense for traditional Feruchemy as it is end-neutral, so storing health becomes a zero sum game - eventually, you're going to get sick and you're not going to be able to overcome it with your natural healing ability no matter how much you manipulate it with a goldmind.

...Unless you've got a supply of Identity-less goldminds lying around. Would a Bloodmaker with a sufficient source of Identity-less goldminds (or the ability to compound, thus bypassing the end-neutral part of Feruchemy) eventually just die from being too old?

Brandon Sanderson

Basically, yes. They can heal their body to match their spiritual ideal, but some things (like some genetic diseases, and age-related illnesses) are seen as part of the ideal. Depends on several factors.

Starsight Release Party ()
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Questioner

If you take a coppermind that has stores and you take a zincmind that has stores and you melt them together to form brass, what happens?

Brandon Sanderson

It's mostly going to destroy your ability to recover any of it, unfortunately. 

Questioner

Are you going to be able to store any more?

Brandon Sanderson

You're probably going to end up, if it was already full, with it being full but you not being able to access it. So it would not be very handy to do. Not be very useful for you.

Shadows of Self release party ()
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Nethseäar

If you were to Hemalurgically give a fallen Elantrian Feruchemic gold, would they be able to store Health?

Brandon Sanderson

A fallen Elantrian store Health-- And you gave them a Hemalurgic spike-- That’s a good question, I would think-- *long pause* You know I think they would not be able to, that’s an excellent question.

Nethseäar

Would it suddenly store up the moment they were restored?

Brandon Sanderson

No, it would not suddenly recover everything. Unless you wanted to channel-- You could do some goofy things but it would kinda ruin their connection to the Dor. But I don’t think it would suddenly-- Y’know. You might be able to do something where you steal it away from them, that could possibly happen. If they were spiked while they were full Elantrian you could probably get more out of them than your average person.

General Reddit 2019 ()
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mikkomikk

It just stores wakefulness right? I don't think it gives you the actual benefits of a good night's sleep. So after an extended period of bronze Compounding, your body will start deteriorating and eventually die.

Brandon Sanderson

Bronze Compounding will indeed let you never have to sleep. /u/mikkomikk as a good theory, as I haven't really talked about this, and that might be the way to theorize without more info--but it was designed to let people go without sleep, and does give benefits of a good night's sleep.

ElTigreChang1

Alternatively, could you compound copper for a supernatural sleeping aid? or would that just lead to accidentally sleeping for 16 hours

Brandon Sanderson

Copper? I don't see that working, I'm afraid. Did you mean bronze?

You could fill bronze to sleep. (This is actually the very first power for Mistborn I imagined, back in highschool. Wishing, as an insomniac, I could sleep when I wanted to and be rested when I wanted to.)

General Reddit 2015 ()
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Questioner

[question about using Feruchemy in Dungeons and Dragons]

Brandon Sanderson

Why Feruchemy "works" in book terms is because it's about intrinsic trade off. We see the character pay something, so we accept when later on, they're able to do something dramatic. Narratively, their boost is "earned" in much the same way that a character "earns" their ending winning a duel by showing us through the story that they've been practicing with the sword.

You need to "earn" your boosts. If I were a GM, I'd suggest that you can store attributes during one day of gameplay, to use it during another day of gameplay. -2STR for one day, +2STR for the next day. I'd say no more than -/+2 at first--with feats or Feruchemist prestige class levels allowing you to do 4 or even 6. Storing senses could be covered with WIS, and health with CON.

Alternately, if you want to get into the specifics, you could try something where when you land a hit, you can use a smaller damage die (a d4 instead of d6) to "store up" strength. Then later, when you need it, you can trade in one of those stored moments (which would be capped with a maximum number that could be stored at once, to be raised by requiring you to find special metals) to raise a damage die during a climactic battle--maybe making your d6 into a d10. You could do the same thing with spot checks (take a penalty for specific rolls to be able to add to the later on.) HP could be done the same way--drop your HP for a battle to "store" then raise them for another battle.

This is more of a tweak to the way the books use the magic, but the idea is to make certain your cost is still a cost. You get ahead by choosing the times to - or +, making it fun--but you are always paying a price.

So the first question I'd ask myself is do I want this to be a time period thing or a specific instances thing--which would be more fun to play? Then ask is this about attributes or specific skills/hit points, etc? Define some rules, define how you get better, and then have fun within the system.

Personally, I'd avoid the will save as a cost to drawing out the attribute or ability. Perhaps make it require concentration checks if you want to make it tougher--but requiring a will save to magically gain strength doesn't feel very "feruchemist" to me and downplays the real fun you could have with the character. Role playing a day spent with very low spot checks, or a terrible constitution, could be really fun.

I'd also figure out if you can do some kind of "super move" with the abilities by storing up a whole lot. (Like ten units, however you decide upon them.)

My take on the attributes: Iron: To be used in a role playing way, making yourself lighter or heavier, with no battle implications. Steel: Increase/decrease movement speed in a fight. OR under the effects of a "slow" spell for a day, vs under the effects of a "haste" spell. Super move: Very limited time stop. Tin: Spot Checks or WIS. Pewter: STR checks, damage die, or +/- damage to each hit. Zinc: Bonus to hit (for thinking through the situation) or bonus to initiative. (With corresponding negatives.) Brass: Specific fortitude checks.Copper: Mostly role playing. Memorize a book, or an entire library, if given time. Blank things from your mind to prevent mind reading. Bronze: Mostly role playing, with (perhaps) being able to "rest" immediately and get back any abilities that come with it. (Haven't played 5e--these were big in 4e, but don't know if they kept them.)

These metals are going to be rare.

Cadmium: Not having to breathe for a time could have all kinds of applications, though I'd love to hear you role play hyperventilating all day for one session. Bendalloy: Not eating and storing calories. Great for role playing.Gold: CON bonus, hit points, or something like that. Sudden healing is great for gaming. Electrum: General bonus to all skills. Chromium: Bonus or minus to any roll.

The rest aren't even understood in-world, so I'd stop there. If you go all in on this, I'd say you need some kind of class built around it--perhaps a rogue or monk base, replacing their bonuses with feruchemical abilities that you gain over time.

Starsight Release Party ()
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Questioner

There are Allomantic savants, are there Feruchemical savants?

Brandon Sanderson

Much harder to do. My feeling on Feruchemical savants was because it was your own power in the first place, you can't steep in it so much in the way. But, if you can get someone else's power or if you are fueling your Feruchemy another way, you would become one. So, the Lord Ruler is a good example.

Questioner

Was Miles a...

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. Miles would be the same sort of thing.

Questioner

Is that why he didn't die as quickly in the execution?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes.

So yeah. Normally no but if you can Compound you become... basically that is how I am explaining part of the Compounding abilities. 

Arcanum Unbounded release party ()
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Lightning

If you have a metalmind, you have, like, weight stored in it, and you want to transfer it to a different metalmind, can you just transfer it directly? Or does it pass into you, and then you lose some of the power, and then it goes...

Brandon Sanderson

You don't have to draw it completely out. You are gonna lose a little in the transfer. But it's not as much as you probably think. You can kind of do a little hack thing where it goes through.

Shadows of Self San Jose signing ()
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Questioner

Is there any real difference between Steelrunners and Sliders? It seems like that could be sort of similar class--

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. But different.

--Sliders have the bubble around them, but...

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. They work similarly, the big difference is you're seeing the limitations of Allomancy versus Feruchemy. Where Feruchemy there upper limit is unbounded, but you have really much more distinct cost and that can be stored up. You see that these have a different kind of cost to them, but I would call them the same category of thing, it's just the Feruchemy can be way more powerful. Except its limited by how much you store up.

Orem signing ()
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Questioner

If you were to Feruchemically drain your Identity, would you just be able to be soulstamped by any--  Would any soulstamp work on you?

Brandon Sanderson

Not the way I have it now. Because-- You're getting into stuff that I really would like to have my notes next to me for. So don't take this as too gospel. But the way I have this worked out right now, is if you drain your Identity, you still can't use Feruchemical metalminds that themselves have not been drained of Identity, right?

So, any old stamp still is going to be keyed to someone's past and Identity. So my instincts say no that would not work, but I have not worked out that specific interaction in the notes.

YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
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Raddatatta

In Rhythm of War, Lift came up to the body of Gereh, who had been killed with a messy wound to the chest. Did Mraize kill him with a spike?

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO!

Raddatatta

And a followup to that, Gereh's rings were gone. Would it be possible to spike someone to take their Feruchemical power and then use a metalmind keyed to their Identity?

Brandon Sanderson

This is theoretically possible.

Tel Aviv Signing ()
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Questioner

So, about Feruchemy. If someone takes, for example, a copper metalmind, fills it with memories, and then a tin metalmind, fills it with senses, then melts them together into a bronze metalmind, would you be able to tap anything from it, and what?

Brandon Sanderson

If you made an alloy of them, you would not get anything out of them. You would know there's Investiture in there, but you wouldn't be able to pull it out. 

Questioner

Even if it's your own?

Brandon Sanderson

Even if it's your own, yup. They would interfere with each other to the point that you wouldn't be able to get anything out. Sorry.

Arcanum Unbounded Chicago signing ()
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Questioner

What is the experience of Steelrunning? ...It doesn't speed up your mind, so how do you control yourself?

Brandon Sanderson

Most forms of Allomancy give a small boost to any attributes you would need in order to survive and use and manipulate it,  just like atium. So it's going to give you a slight ability-- might speed you up just enough to get some reactions and things, otherwise you just can't do it. What I don't have it doing is cancelling friction. I did that intentionally, so you can burn yourself up with that. But you have to use it measuredly and carefully.

ConQuest 46 ()
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Kaymyth (parapharased) (paraphrased)

I asked another question about the population levels of Mistings, Ferrings, and Twinborn.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

The numbers in the [Alloy of Law Mistborn Adventure Game] supplement are off. (It states the occurrence of Mistings/Ferrings is 1 in 50 people.) He said that they're not terrible, but they definitely are shown as somewhat more common than they really are. But he also said that they're not nearly as rare as people seem to think; for example, he stated that virtually everyone would know at least one Coinshot. So there are definitely a lot of Allomancers around.

And the occurrence of Twinborn would not be a normal statistical spread (alas).  As folks opined before in this thread, the Terris folk do tend to keep somewhat to themselves, so there's not a huge amount of population mix.  So Twinborn will be rarer.

I did point out that there had to be some mix, else we'd be seeing full Feruchemists around, and to that he mostly just smiled and looked mysterious.  As he does.

Arcanum Unbounded release party ()
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Djarskublar

*inaudible* [I asked if it would be possible to recall Breaths from an object that you had not placed there if the Awakener who did place them there had no Identity at the time.]

Brandon Sanderson

So, this is a very detailed, specific question, if you didn't hear it. It's dealing with the idea of Investiture and Identity, and things like this. If you can unkey the magic with Identity, for almost any case, it's going to make it much easier for other people to use. That's gonna be a blanket statement through the cosmere. If you can blank your Identity, it's at least gonna be able to be used by someone else with a blank Identity. Sometimes it's keyed, so the blank will not work with somebody who is themselves keyed. But if you can blank and they can blank, you can almost always guarantee the magic will be able to be used.

Skyward release party ()
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Questioner

Can a coppermind be Awakened?

Brandon Sanderson

This is possible.

Questioner

With the memories already in it?

Brandon Sanderson

This is going to be harder because those memories are going to be keyed to someone else, who, by nature, would not be the individual that it was made into. You would have to key those memories to who the metalmind was becoming. There would be an extra step in there; It wouldn't just naturally be that way. We're talking wild, wild, these are possible, but far out, stuff. Possible, but there is an extra step in there.

Prague Signing ()
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Paleo

We tried to develop a theory of what a metalmind actually is, and we know that splitting a metalmind can halve the charge effectively or divide the charge.

Brandon Sanderson

It can divide the charge although it makes it much harder to, yeah.

Paleo

But is it actually physical... is the charge concentrated physically at one point or is it more like a gas so it diffuses?

Brandon Sanderson

It diffuses.

17th Shard Forum Q&A ()
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Thought

Could an iron Twinborn "fly" by drastically increasing his weight, pulling hard on a counterweight so it flew above him, then decreasing his weight drastically and pulling himself up by the counterweight, and repeating?

Brandon Sanderson

It's plausible. It's kind of a 'Thor-like' way to fly, isn't it? (For those unaware, he throws his hammer and it carries him with it, and STOP THINKING.) I played with this idea, but the trick is not getting hit by the counterweight as you pull it to yourself. If you could stop that, you might be able to manage it, but it felt pretty hard to pull off to me.

Worldbuilders AMA ()
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yurisses

If Miles stored a very tiny bit of health into a gold bead and then burned it, what would happen? Would he see goldshadows for a time and then obtain Compounded health when reaching the charged part of the bead? Would the bead be evenly charged and deliver only health, no gold shadows, but at a very low rate since only little health was loaded in it? Would the bead be evenly charged and deliver only health, but at a standard rate the user would always get when compounding?

Brandon Sanderson

He'd hack the system to deliver health for a short time instead of doing what it was supposed to do, but only until the small portion of gold Invested with his Investiture ran out.

Idaho Falls signing ()
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Truthwatcher_17.5

Are we ever gonna see more names for specific types of Twinborns?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, I intend to do more of those as the Eras progress. There are so many to name that I don't know that I'll ever release a chart of all of them, and partially I don't want to canonize names because I might decide something sounds cooler for when I actually use that person's powers in a book.

Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
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Chaos

Do all three Metallic Arts still exist after the events of the book? Are Allomancy and Hemalurgy slightly degenerated now that Ruin and Preservation are dead, or does Allomancy still draw upon Preservation's power (just held with Sazed now)?

Brandon Sanderson

Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy all work as they once did. However, now they are more directly affected by the presence or absence of the mists, which will slowly return to the world but not be of the extent they once were. (The mists are now an extent of Sazed's power, and where they roam, he is better able to influence things. There will also be two kinds of mists.) Note that in the future, Feruchemy powers will start to fracture and split, creating Feruchemical "Mistings."

Yes, this means that in the future series, it will be possible for a person to have one Allomantic power and one Feruchemical power. It will create for some very interesting mixing of powers.