My three picks would be Dirtamancy, Turnamancy, and Dollamancy. I pick these over others not because they are better, or because of what I imagine
others to be capable of, but because these are the ones we actually know what they are good for in the sense that we have seen them used multiple times.DirtamancyPros
: I think a lot of people are picking this one for the same reasons I am. We know a lot of both what it can do, and also how it works. It seems to be a well rounded school with a lot of utility in multiple categories. They can increase resources production, add plumbing and drainage, improve town defenses, reduce costs on city upgrading, create customizable golem units, manipulate the terrain for mining and farming or defenses, build complex mechanical systems, and depending on what “fabricate” means, they might even be able to build Matter based gear and items. They can boost offense, defense, and resource production with no visible drawback.Cons
: I can literally see no downside to having one, other then it filling a caster popping slot on your sides roster. Why a side would treat them as mere janitors is beyond me.TurnamancyPros
: Speed up production in cities, manipulate time (maybe?), manipulate minds, and most of all creates vehicles. Being able to reliably create mass transit systems is a pretty big deal in a game that seems to put so much emphasis on transportation of trade goods. And with it being said how important force multiplication is, being able to create iron clad ships, tanks, technicals, and maybe even gunships to mechanize your fighting force and increase “reach” can’t be underestimated. And the fact that they can only speed up one city is not as big a deal if you can move them, or what they produce, around wherever you want. And none of this includes their potentially creepy clockwork orange mind control powers. So far they can boost offense, transportation, and troop production with no visible drawback whatsoever.Cons
: Like Dirtamancy, their doesn’t actually seem to be
one so far. The only cost it seems to have at this point is the opportunity cost of filling a caster slot in your side.DollamancyPros
: Golems, magic items, scenery, and raiment. It can produce mechanical mounts in place of vehicles, allowing for some of the same advantages in transportation afforded by Turnamancy. It can make high powered energy weapons and protective gear for your commanders, in addition to whatever “fabrication with a motion element” means. It can create communications and surveillance systems like in Haffaton. Transylvito has some sort of “factory” for industrial mass production. Beds and maybe buildings in general are included. It produces stylish clothes for your people. Thus it can increase troop strength, transportation, production, comfort, and communications.Cons
: Again, none that we have seen.Croakamancy
This one isn't actually a choice I'm picking. It just seems a little odd to me. It’s the magic of the main female protagonist, and yet we’ve only ever seen her making an assortment of zombies and skeletons with it. Everything in her start in book 0 almost hints it it should do more though. Her brother Tommy being brought back from the dead and her bossing Fritz around seems like a clear reference to Frankenstein.
On top of that, her Capitol has Fruit Brutes in cages and she lives near a side with a city called Chocula.
It just seems so weird that she can’t make more complex and varied undead. Every other magic shown so far in detail has had a ton of on theme or pun based magic powers, but a main protagonist can only cast like 1 or 2 spells? And they are all pretty much just different versions of the same thing? That has seemed strange to me is all. So far it just doesn't seem as interesting or varied, and most peoples negative assessment of it seems fair if all it can really do is make a few dancing skeleton warriors. If she could do more kinds of necromancy though, I’d choose this in a heartbeat. I often play using necromancy in fantasy strategy games, and having the ability to pretty much give my commanders a second life, which actually makes them stronger after words, would be fantastic. Or better yet sacrifice them as a straight upgrade, as many horror movies do with vampires biting their servants to make them vampires too, or scientists putting people’s brains in jars to make undead cyborgs.
Or maybe she could create magic rings.
Nine of them to be exact.
Rings that transform people who wear them into…Ring Waifs.