For magic items, the number of charges reflects the number of times it may be used. For example, if a blue crystal contains 40 charges, it may be activated 40 separate times before the magic is exhausted. Many (but not all) magic items can be recharged. They may or may not "crumble into dust" and be destroyed when the last charge is used.
Methods of determining an item's charges include:
- Loresinging (also tells if it can be recharged and whether it is crumbly)
- Elemental Detection (405)
- Abandoned Inn crystal
Magic Charges are listed during a loresong on a scale:
- 1-9 usually tells you the exact number with a sufficiently skilled bard
- 10-19: quite a few
- 20-29: several
- 30+: many
Both Loresinging and Elemental Detection can also estimate an item's maximum mana capacity, used to calculate how many charges can be placed into it when recharging.
For enhancive items, charges are a general measure of how long the enhancive property will last. Charges are used up randomly when the enhancive property is active (typically when the item is being worn and not under an enhancive pause). Like magic items, enhancives may or may not be rechargeable, and can be either crumbly or persistent. Recharging enhancive items (provided they are able to be recharged) is a service offered by the Adventurer's Guild in exchange for performing bounty tasks. Temporary enhancive chargers--making the item usable for a fixed period of time regardless of the number of charges actually in it--are also available through the SimuCoin store; while benefitting from their effects, the item will not use any actual charges from its count.
An item that holds both a magic spell and an enhancive property will have a separate number of charges for each, as well as separate crumbly/persistent conditions.