What, exactly, is a mage in Elvenar? At it’s simplest, mage is a role assignment along with archmage, fellow, and ambassador. The mage role has enhanced permissions and can do pretty much anything an archmage can do, save change the role of the archmage (only the AM can do that) and dissolve the fellowship.
What it means to be a mage is something else entirely. And I tell you, it varies so wildly that I almost didn’t write this post. I have seen the mage role used as
- an archmage role because the archmage went inactive
- an indicator of what type of neighborly help was desired when using the mobile app
- a status to show that a player has enhanced responsibilities and is a good person to go to for answers or help with the game
- a meaningless tag next to a player’s name.
Essentially what it comes down to is that the fellowship, and particularly the archmage, get to define what the role of a mage is.
In my experience, an archmage who tries to do it all is a tired archmage, a burnt out archmage, a frustrated archmage, or an ex-archmage. Mages, in my fellowships, are people who share the knowledge and responsibilities of leadership so that the game stays fun and feasible for everyone. They also provide continuity, so that if an archmage leaves the fellowship need not fall apart because everyone knows how things work.
Some fellowships even make specific types of mages – a tourney mage, for example, might be responsible for making sure that everyone knows what they need to prepare for a tourney, helping set strategy, motivating people, communicating results, etc. Other types of mages I’ve seen include general-purpose mages, Fellowship Adventure mages, recruiting mages, and communications/research mages.
It’s up to you what it means to have mages in your fellowship. I would suggest finding very regular players, particularly if they have an appropriate interest or skill, and having them help you lead — for the betterment of players and fellowship.