Components are small things you can do or use to provide power to your automata when activating them. What components you have access to depends on your skills. You need to use at least one component to activate your automata.
Unless otherwise noted, each component can be used only once per activation and each component requires exactly one second to use. In addition, only one component can be used at the same time, so you will have to string them together to use multiple components. Every component provides a certain amount of power as described by the component. Once finished using components you have five seconds to power an automata before the power is lost.
Using components requires a certain amount of concentration, which means you can not fight, run or perform other phisically heavy tasks. If your concentration is broken, all power you gathered to activate the automata is lost and you need to start again. Note that components that are consumed when used for power will still be lost!
Types of Components
Each component type represents a different source of power.
Verbal and Somatic
These are the most basic of components, that provide a little power even to an untrained apprentice. They represent an innate power source, the power of your own body. Both components are a way to access this power. The Verbal component is something like a spoken word, a short melody or even just a raw shout. The Somatic component is a gesture, like a hand wave, a piroutte or similar. Both components can be the same every time or something completely different per activation. Verbal and somatic components can be used at the same time, this is an exception to the normal rules of only allowing on use at a time.
Material components are small amounts of matter that are consumed to provide power to your automata. They are simple things like a handful of sand or a cup of water, but also more elaborate things like a piece of silk or a specially crafted gold coin. Each material component provides an amount of power as described on the item card of that component. To use the component, perform an action with the material, preferrably something that indicates the material is being consumed. For example, in the case of a handful of sand you can sprinkle it around. You can use any amount of material components during activation, but each material component is consumed during use. Note that each material component still counts as a separate use, so using five materail components will take ten seconds.
A focus component is a specially crafted item that can be used to focus and channel the ambient energy around you. The amount of power provided is described on the item card. Focus components are not consumed when used. To use a focus component, wave it around it the air around you, touch it to the ground or perform some other action with the object to indicate the energy gathering.
Willpower can be used to add power to your automata. To do so, choose an amount of willpower you want to expend. After concentrating for two seconds, you expend the amount of willpower. This will provide you 500 power for every willpower expended.
Your own flesh and blood can be used to power your automata. To use this component, cut or otherwise damage yourself to become injured. You will drop to 0 hit points and receive 500 power. Note that this will not break your concentration like taking damage normally would. This process can be repeated once during the same activation, the second use drops you to -1 hitpoint and will also provide you with 500 power.
There are several special components that are provided by skills, like "Sacrifice Flesh" or "Power Reserve". The details of these components are described by the skills, but remember that unless otherwise noted, the normal rules apply to them.