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Cults of Runequest: Tribes

The previous blog entry described how clans work in the Runequest rules. However, in Dragon Pass, almost all clans are organised into tribes and tribal federations, which add an extra level of complexity and options. As such, to a clan member, being part of a tribe offers opportunities that a clan by itself could not support. In Runequest a tribe is an alliance or federation of clans. Tribes typically number in the thousands or more, so it is unlikely for anyone to know everyone. Unlike a c

Background: Dice Probability Tables

Questworlds is Chaosium's rules and prep-lite RPG system. Fundamental to it is the opposed roll, in which a skill is rolled against a resistance, using  'highest rolled value  as a tiebreak i both rolls succeed. The produces a table of probabilities that looks like this:   This table skill on the left, and resistance on top. Both are unrolled so 22 is 42.  This table has 2 key desirable properties: thanks to the tiebreak rule, it almost always (at least 95% of the time) p

Cults of Runequest: Clans

The previous blog entry described Rune Cults in abstract rules terms. This by itself is enough for running an adventure-focused game, where rune cults serve a game function much like that of D&D character classes.  However, many people prefer a community-focused game, in the style of the Red Cow campaign or Six Seasons in Sartar. This requires a somewhat deeper understanding of how the rules portray the setting, in particular what a clan is. In the RQ:G rules, the term clan is used

radmonger

radmonger in Runequest

Cults of Runequest

For Rune and Spirit Magic,Rivers of Sartar uses a lightly modified version of the RQ:G cult rules that underlay the supplements in the Cults of Runequest (CoR) line. So in order to explain these rules, and justify their existence, it is necessary to first explain how the official rules work. Hopefully this will also prove useful to those who want to stick with the Rules As Written (RAW), or make their own preferred tweaks. RQ:G RAW A PC is born into a clan, which is normally

radmonger

radmonger in Runequest

Scenario 2: Voria's Run

The Festival The first day of the year is Freezeday of Disorder week, Sea season. This day is holy to Voria the Spring Virgin, the goddess of new beginnings, youth and innocence. In Nochet, this is traditionally celebrated by a mass run. Horns call children, and the young-at-heart, into the streets. There, they simply run until exhaustion. There is no start or finish line, no winning or losing, just run until you drop. Wherever you fall, when you recover you look around for a sign of Voria'

radmonger

radmonger in Lyksos

Background: Repeated dice rolls and probability

One of the three modes of play that these rules support is free-form play, where every contest is resolved with a single opposed roll. For some GMs and groups, this by itself is enough. Many successful campaigns have been run in this way, ever since it was adapted for RPGs from the style of wargame invented by Tom Mouat. However, sometimes you might want a contest that isn't resolved so quickly. One that fills more of the session, one that has several twists and turns that generate an emerg

Game Mechanics: Consequences and Resources

When a contest resolves, whether simple or ongoing, if the result is not to any contestants liking, they may reject it. Normally this will because they lost, but a particularly confident contestant might be unsatisfied in the level of success they achieved and try for more. In order to do so, if they are losing, they must accept a number of consequences sufficient to bring the contest back to being a draw. If they were winning, they must give up successes instead. Either way, at this point

Introducing Rivers of Sartar

There are many BRP-derived, Runequest-inspired fantasy role-playing game systems; ones I am aware of include Mythras, OpenQuest, SpeedRune, SimpleQuest, Revolution D100, Jackals and Legend. This is mine[1]. For people who are not me, it's main selling point is that it is a unofficial adaptation of some of the principles behind the QuestWorld game engine to Chaosium's world of Glorantha. In particular, it changes certain aspects of the QuestWorlds core mechanics to support the direct us

Game Mechanics: Opposed Rolls and Tie Breaks

How to roll In Rivers of Sartar, all rolls are opposed rolls, between contestants, each of which is using an ability. Each contestant simultaneously rolls a single D100 (the success D100), and zero or more D20s (the bonus D20). The option of using different numbers of bonus D20 provides an additional dimension by which different situations may be handled in game: if a contestant has advantage, roll 2 bonus die; use the higher one.

Game Mechanic: Ongoing Contests

In an ongoing contest, a sequence of rolls are used to resolve a single contest. As with freeform play, success or failure simply changes the situation which must be dealt with. Compared to freeform play, within that contest, additional rules and guidelines apply, and so the need for GM fiat is somewhat lessened. A contest normally ends with a decisive roll, which will indicate the degree of success or failure the contest resulted in. A PC may

Scenario 1: Childhood Games

This short cameo is designed to introduce players to the basics of the rules in a low-threat environment. Player characters are 11 or 12 year old children in Nochet (N:AG), the largest city in all Glorantha.  At the start of play, nothing else is known about them; they will gain characteristics and skills during play. In Nochet, children of that age spend their morning doing chores, and evening with their families. But for much of the afternoon, they are free to play in the streets. The gam

radmonger

radmonger in Lyksos

The Lyksos Campaign

The Lyksos mini-campaign is intended as a step-by-step tutorial for these rules. It is based on Harald Smith's Nochet, Queen of Cities, and in particular the adventurer's guide  (N:AG). It is designed to be run interleaved with RQ:G character creation, so that characters emerge through play, start out knowing each other. By default, when going through the first two steps of family history, it is suggested to pick an answer by consensus.  This means the players will have a common authority,

radmonger

radmonger in Lyksos

Game Mechanics: Free-form Game-play

Rivers of Sartar supports three modes: free-form game play, structured contests and tactical combat. A given game may use any or all of these, by simply switching between them as required for pacing and to maintain player interest. In free-form play, the rolls to be made should be based on the logic of the situation as it unfolds. Each roll is standalone, in that there are no built-in mechanical consequences for succeeding or failing. There is no defined time scale. Instea

Happy New Year, Everybody!

Just wishing everybody here a Happy New Year in 2024. I've been looking back at 2023, and the single biggest gaming-related event was the OGL fiasco, and the new ORC License. Let's hope that 2024 will be better for us, with loads more Mythras content coming down the line.

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

...and so it begins (cross-posted from forum)

A little background to start: Like many, I found Pendragon through RuneQuest which I began running with 2nd edition back in the 1980s.  When I saw first edition Pendragon, I was sold immediately – but not most of the people I played with.  Only one person from my group back then really seemed to get into it so it got shelved.  I picked up some things over the years (particularly the big hardcover of the GPC) but that was it.  However, with the plague and the lockdown that one guy who was in

Teacherguy

Teacherguy in GPC Sessions

Mythras Adventures in Time and Space

Tonight's blog is about writing adventures, as compared to reviewing existing ones. Tonight, I'll take my cue from the late Ursula K LeGuin for inspiration. I doubt that the imagination can be suppressed. If you truly eradicated it in a child, he would grow up to be an eggplant. - Ursula K LeGuin A tabletop adventure has got to capture the imagination. But it's also got to draw in the players. It's their time and energy, and the GM has got to give them something to challenge the

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

Back To Meeros - Xamoxis' Cleansing

So, this being the last Saturday of the month of October 2023, I felt it was time to go back to Meeros and environs for another adventure. Last time, it was Sariniya's Curse; this time, it's Xamoxis' Cleansing. Behold, a map. For    For some of us, this is the first time we've seen where Meeros sits, as well as the lands and seas surrounding the city. What's this adventure about? First of all, Xamoxis' Cleansing is some sort of MacGuffin. A desideratum. A Maltese Fa

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

Looking At Parts Per Million's BSRP

Parts Per Million is a small publisher with a speciality. Solo roleplaying. From their DTRPG page:- Parts Per Million is a specialist creator of Solo Roleplaying tools. I believe that moving between your chosen Oracle and your favorite game should be seamless, the entire experience should feel like one game. The solo supplements you will find here are intended to be an entry point into solo play. Every soloist builds their own set of preferred tools. These supplements will ge

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

A Look At ... Life's Long Consequences

And so it's time for another review of a Mythras adventure. This one is the first adventure to be attached to a Mythic title. In this case, it's Mythic Constantinople, a title I aim to review at some point in the future. For right now, let's take a look at this adventure by Mark Shirley. By the way, just in case, if you're planning on running this adventure, best to have a copy of Mythras and Mythic Constantinople handy. The opening paragraph of the blurb lays the story on the sho

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

A Look At ... Mythras Adventures

Tonight, and for the next couple of months, this blog will be looking into the adventures created for Mythras and satellite games. This includes the Meeros adventures, the Luther Arkwright adventures, and the adventures for Mythic Constantinople and Lyonesse. We're going to start with Sariniya's Curse, the introductory adventure designed to allow the readers to test out the combat system in a dungeon crawl. Behold, the Mark of Sariniya. Actually, the glyph comes out with a bi

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

Mythras Factions

This month, I will be looking at Mythras Factions, The Design Mechanism's most recent title for Mythras. This will be a short review, as it is a short book. I'm also declaring personal interest, since I both proofed it and supplied material for the book, hence the multiple credits on the inside cover. Mythras Factions Only this week, I received my complimentary author's copy of this book. It's a slim volume, like a magazine with glossy, colourful pages. The illustrations by A

Alex Greene

Alex Greene in writing

1604: Rebuilding

The main characters for 1604 are:     Rana Allmother, Busybody and Terrible Cook, Charmer of Men and Vingans     Forshator Quilwright, Scribe and Legalist     Glenning Stoneheart, Cowardly Bard ----- 1604 Babies The Tenth entered the city of Furthest late last year. The Dark Season was temperate compared to Sartar, and the darkness less impenetrable due to the glow of the Red Moon. You hear tales of a Lunar defeat in the Holy Country, but war seems farther away now. Now

Bahntah

Bahntah in questworlds

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