In Mistborn: Secret History

Hoid becomes a Mistborn.

I was wondering why he wanted to do that, as I had previously assumed that the magic had to be done on its home world. Now I am not sure.

Does Hoid have to be on Scadrial (the Mistborn planet) to use his new Mistborn powers.

  • 1
    Hang about - I don't remember him becoming Mistborn. I know he stole the last pellet, but I don't think he actually ingests it. I think he just keeps it for later use. – Tim Jan 17 '17 at 0:30
  • There are abilities local to the individual and powers local to the "planet" or area of the planet. Mistborn powers are within the individual and the investiture used (metal) can be found and transported anywhere. Elantris has a lot of local only powers. Many of Roshar's powers are local, but I assume a Spren can follow you to another planet should it so choose (and the Cognative realm allows it). But does Stormlight travel? – Alan Leuthard Aug 2 '17 at 15:50

Some powers can be used anywhere, as long as the user has access to the necessary resources, while others cannot. In Arcanum Unbounded, the scholar writing the excerpts about each system in the Cosmere mentions some evidence to support this.

Before the short story "The Eleventh Metal", the writer mentions the the powers of the Mistborn planet (Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy) are very powerful. They go on to say that

...the one of these with the largest potential impact on the cosmere is Hemalurgy. Usable by anyone with the right knowledge, this dangerous creation has proven able to warp souls regardless of planet or Investiture...

This shows that it doesn't matter which planet the user is on.

Powers that cannot be used far from their source/planet can be seen in the book Elantris. Spoilers ahead so read with caution. At the end of the book Raoden teleports to a different continent to save Sarene. Once he is there, though, his powers are significantly weaker because he is too far from the source of the power in Elantris. This can be worked around though as shown in Kelsier's story from Arcanum Unbound. When he is spying on the Ire, they are obviously Elantrians who are somehow using a conduit to bring the power to them.

TLDR: It really depends on the power and the related Investiture.

| improve this answer | |
  • I thought the Elantris issue was due to the fact that the shard was splintered. – Matrim Cauthon Jan 16 '17 at 15:27
  • 1
    @MatrimCauthon - It may be indirectly because the shards there are splintered, but it's mostly because the magic on that world (Sel) is very very tightly tied to each land and region (The Emperor's Soul has good examples of each home country having different powers), and becomes completely different kinds of magic in different countries, and Elantris doubled down on that by making the city a giant amplifier. – Radhil Jan 16 '17 at 15:30
  • @Radhil - It is because they’re Splintered. Odium stuck Devotion and Dominion’s power in the Cognitive Realm, which is more location-based than the Spiritual, and that’s what causes the location-based nature of Selish magic. – Adamant Oct 2 '17 at 20:02
  • @Adamant - object-based maybe. Aren't Shards mostly in the Cognitive anyway? source? – Radhil Oct 2 '17 at 20:11
  • @Radhil - The power of Shards exists in the Spiritual. The source for all this is Arcanum Unbounded. – Adamant Oct 2 '17 at 20:19

Current evidence says they work just fine elsewhere.

In Words of Radiance he is seen emptying a packet of dust into his drink and swallowing it, much like Allomancers ingest metal. This suggests that he used the bead of Lerasium he picked up at the Well of Ascension, and that any powers he obtained are functional on Roshar.

From Chapter 43, with young Shallan watching the figure later shown to be Hoid:

Shallan turned back to the newcomer. She caught, with a subtle movement, the man slipping something from his coat pocket and moving it up toward the drinks. A shock coursed through Shallan. She raised a hand. Poison--

The newcomer covertly dumped the pouch’s contents into his own drink, then raised it to his lips, gulping down the powder. What had it been?

Khriss' writings term the energy common to all the Cosmere's powers as investiture. It's just it's manifestation that changes from place to place (even on the same planet, as @kjw's answer points out), and given how mysterious Hoid is on the best of days, it's hard to say whether his is a unique situation or he knows just enough to abuse the rules. There are definitely other links between investiture and metal other than Mistborn's magics however.

| improve this answer | |
  • Good catch, I had forgotten about that interaction. – kjw Jan 16 '17 at 15:26
  • FYI Brandon finally burnt the bullet and canonized that Hoid did indeed consume that bead and definitely is now a mistborn. wob.coppermind.net/events/377/#e12210 – JMac Mar 9 '19 at 2:20

It is likely the power can be used anywhere by the right being.

Each shard has created their own breed on humans in their own image. Ruin and Preservation created mankind on Scadrial, and Honor (Tanavast) also created Mankind on Roshar. Clearly they are working from the same source (wherever they came from before the shattering), but there are subtle difference between the various "humans".

For Scadrians, investiture manifests as the Metallic Arts (Allomancy, Feruchemy, and to a lesser extent Hemalurgy). For Rosharans, investiture manifests as Surgebinding (with Old Magic and Voidbinding being used by non-humans). The difference being the shards themselves.

While every human (seen thus far) has the potential to invest energy, they are limited by the type of power their "god" possesses. Honor can not create humans that can invest Preservation's power, and Ruin/Preservation can not create a being that can invest Honor's power.

In fact, we can see this on a small scale in Mistborn. Ruin can talk to people who are spiked, but can't read their mind. Preservation can read minds, but not speak into them. Their powers remain separate even though they worked together to create beings that can use both.

So to get around to the point here. I believe that any being will always be able to access and use the source of investiture that their creator possesses. For Scadrians, so long as they have metal, they can use the Metallic Arts. For Rosharans, as long as they have storm light and their spren, they can surgebind (this raises the question if spren can leave Roshar, but that's not relevant at the moment).

Hoid is special I think, because he is an original human (not created by any of the Shards) and likely able to use any of the form of investiture if he meets the appropriate prerequisites (consuming the bead of Lerasium)

| improve this answer | |
  • This is incorrect generalisation. Only Scadrians were said to be created by Shards. On another point ,everyone in Cosmere can use Hemalurgy - in doesn't need any Connection to Scadrial or Ruin in particular. – Mithoron Mar 5 '19 at 1:10

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.