The description reads: Power Level 3 - Temporarily transmute an object into another object of the same size and weight. What’s the intended use and limitations of this? For instance, if I wanted to get through a locked door, would a character with Alteration 3 be able to transmute the door into sawdust, causing it to collapse and leave an open entryway?
For the case of sawdust, I would argue that a pile of sawdust isn’t an individual object by rather a collection of objects. However, I’m afraid the non-answer to this is “it’s up to the GM”. It’s certainly allowed within the rules, assuming the door is smaller than the size limit, but the GM could disallow it for any number of reasons if that might cause problems in their campaign (for example, the door cannot be isolated from the building for the purposes of transmuting).
I guess I’m just trying to figure out what transmutation is good for at power level 3. I mean, in order to keep something the exact same size and shape, you kind of have to keep it the same substance, too.
It doesn’t have to be exact down to the ounce, it just has to be close. No turning a rock into gold, or a lead weight into a whole sword, but you could turn a wooden door into soap and cut through it (assuming the GM agrees it makes sense for your character and the world they’re running).
Same size and weight, not same shape. That might not always be apparent upon the first reading, but looking at the others, the way the size changes is by 50% and then 200%, so the size part is just in reference to size not to the actual shape.
You could take the door, for example, and only transmute the shape, keeping the same material and weight, but just reshaping it into a box instead of a door.
Ah, I see. Thanks to you both for clearing that up.