Dark magic (DM) and light magic (LM) are similar to their elemental counterparts in some ways, but are far more dangerous to use. Shadow Magic provides some of the benefits of each, but without the possible problems.
Dangers of Dark Magic and Light MagicEdit
DM and LM are different from both pure and elemental magic in that they have a measure of independence. They can be controlled, and the results are often devastating, but they cloud the judgement of the wielder. Neither DM nor LM is sentient, this is simply an inherent part of using them. DM is not "bad" and more than LM is "good", they are neutral forces. The effects they have vary by the wielder, but they can spark cruelty or fits of berserker rage, or cause the mage to believe they can do no wrong. They essentially tear down the barriers holding back whatever emotions or tendencies the user has been suppressing, then magnify them. This could, theoretically, have positive results, but there are no recorded instances where it actually did.
Shadow magic simply lies directly between DM and LM. As long as the user can walk the fine line between the two, he or she will experience none of their ill effects. Manipulation of appearance falls under Shadow Magic and it is unique to SM. However, shadow magic is typically weaker than either of its counterparts, and must be used with more technique and care.
Teleportion, a favorite technique of the Assassins' Guild, works best with Dark Magic since it works best when a portal is opened, and to a lesser extent with Shadow Magic. ( Other forms of magic can be twisted for the same effect, but it is much more difficult, and rarely as effective.)