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Atalan BTF #5



Well, it's been awhile. OK, I'll admit it, I completely forgot I was doing a blog on this. *sigh* I'm not the greatest diarist in the world so this is something of a mental discipline for me. Apologies to those who might have waited for a follow on.


1. What Has Gone Before:

I've introduced my new players to the system using some 'average Jane' characters. These were built to be good at their stated role but average in every other respect. The Hoplite, for example, had 15s in her STR, DEX, CON, and SIZ but 10 everyplace else. The idea was that the characters could be reasonably disposable if the system turned against their skill rolls. I feel it's important to show a computer gamer that in the table top the odds of dying are there and real, especially in a system like BRP/CoC/RQ.

"In RuneQuest, there is no QuickSave"

We then had a break because of 'this thing called life', BUT by happy coincidence that break took place when the Starter Set came out and I thought it would be a fine time to convert the setting to Glorantha. The next time we got together we tried that using the SoloQuest/Battle of Dangerford. Once we got done with that, the girls decided they preferred the Atalan setting. OK, I guess I have more writing to do.

So I generated several 'real' characters and got a pretty good batch. After being given a stack to choose from, I now have a Light Cavalry-woman Poseidon cultist, a Leatherworker Athena cultist, and a Healer Apollo cultist. My ref NPC character is an Hunter Artemis cultist..


2. My Referee Emphasis ['emphases'?]

This is the first time in my gaming life that I've had a table of just women, and one of them an impressionable tween. Now, I grew up in a house full of women in the 70's. Things have changed a bit since then. These are the identifiable issues I see with all this:

a. The girls are not as aggressive or combative as most male tables are. I have to make sure to adjust my scenarios to include more success without combat options. Thank Greg that the RQ/BRP is very amenable to that, more so than DnD or other systems. This is just a mental thing on my part.

b. Sexuality is being kept to a low key. I don't want my grand niece to feel as if her character has to be pretty or use sex to succeed in the game. OTOH, social manipulation is part of every game and I want to leave that avenue open.

c. De-emphasizing cults. In Glorantha, cult advancement is a vital part of the game. I think that many of us think of achieving Rune level status as a benchmark of advancement... RQ's version of 'DING! I just levelled!'... and I want to open up the Atalan game to success beyond just religious affiliation. I'm still working out how to do that.


3. Where We Are Now.

With the new characters in hand, the party has just stepped on to the dock of Soldier Port of the RQ3 Griffin Island boxes set. This will be, with extremely heavy modification, my starting sandbox. If the players get bored with that, I can always load them on another boat.

Maugre has become Master Tythos, an Atalan factotum who has taken over and fortified a township as a 'Hudson's Bay' style operation. Society in Soldier Port is an mixture of Atalan overlaying the local culture. I'm basing much of the local culture off the Ashtanti of Ghana. There is also a layer of generic 'people from everywhere' in a kind of 'Old Coaster' society. Atalan hasn't colonized or claimed Soldier Port, it's a profit-making enterprise... a fortified trading post with a native village outside it. But there are several mainstream personalities in town who might be exiles or whose lives just washed them up on this particular shore.

The first mission for the team will be a reverse path from their earlier characters... they'll be sent to find the wreck of the ship their original characters survived. At that point, they'll get all their old treasure back 😁


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