Date:Sat Apr 10 14:05:28 1999
There are a few important changes to spellcasting.

o  Spells do not "plainly" fail anymore (except for orcs in the sun).
   Either you succeed, or you backfire.

o  The mana used during spellcasting has a random component, which
   decreases if you learn the spell very well. Exhausting mana during
   spellcasting results in a backfire.

o  Casting a spell that is very near your level has a high chance of

o  When you start casting, you will be warned if the risk of backfire is
   higher than normal: you will receive the message "You muster all of your
   concentration..." instead of "You start to concentrate..."

o  *** The effects of a spell improve the higher you practice it. ***
   This is true even of spells like enchant, sanctuary and heal, which used to
   have a fixed effect. Putting only a few practices on a spell means casting
   it at a lower effective level, with lesser effects and higher mana cost.
   Hard to learn, high-level spells may require many practice sessions before
   you can even attempt to use them.

o  Casting now takes an optional <effort> parameter. You can cast a spell
   more slowly but with greater effects, or quickly but with a higher chance
   of backfire. The syntax is:

   cast <effort> 'spell' [target]

   where <effort> can be, like in search and flush:

   quick       - casting time, + mana used, - spell power, + backfire
   normal      minimize mana usage; average casting time, power, backfire
   thorough    + casting time, + mana used, + spell power, - backfire

o  By default, casting without an "effort" parameter is equivalent to
   "cast normal". You can however "change spellcasting" to choose a new

o  The mana cost you see on your practice list --

   Skill / Spell          Knowledge  Difficulty Class      Mana Casting time
   Control weather        Fair       Hard       Mage         25, Short

   -- is the *average* mana cost for casting the spell with normal effort. This
   average cost might be higher than your maximum mana; this doesn't mean that
   you will be unable to cast the spell, only that you have a high chance of it