Before the current archmage took his seat at Scytheshadow College, the rules were much stricter about what kind of studies could be conducted in the college. Development of new ways had stagnated for decades due to adherence to traditions and old ways. Many magic users became disillusioned with the place.
One of these up-and-coming mages was Zhabor Ito, a half-elf whose work on developing new and better magical foci put him close to the Scytheshadow Staff quite often. As he studied the famed focus, Zhabor came to some ideas about how magic could be used in relation to a focus.
Noting that many magic users don’t employ a focus at all, Ito argued that it was the person’s connection to the focus that gave it its efficacy. At the time, this was a radical idea. A focus was a tool, not an extension of the wizard.
Disagreeing, Ito eventually took his studies and what few acolytes he had and left the college. They were on a boat in the middle of the bay when Baota himself appeared to them.
The god of channeling magic blessed Ito’s work and confirmed that he was absolutely correct. With this encouragement, Ito and his followers founded their own small community separate from the college to develop their new school of thought.
Eventually, this lead to Ito and his students developing arcane weapons, weapons that could channel unique spells through them to cater to the fighter’s existing style. These battlemages trained and honed their skills and drew in more, both from the college and from elsewhere, and their fame grew. To this day, they accept new students, who are then trained in the art of crafting their own weapon and imbuing it with a personal connection. They are some of the most fluid battlemages Muunfel has ever seen.
“When the new archmage took over, he invited us to return to the college. With no hard feelings, I told him that we had formed our own community and settlement. We need room for training, anyway.” – Zhabor Ito, Battlemage of Baota