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  1. THE MIDNIGHT EXPRESS Daystar turned and said something to the dragonewt, a series of sibilant incomprehensible spits and hisses formed with his curiously split tongue. Silently, the great reptile came down from the mound and joined them. The priest then called to the lone figure at her brazier, "Forgotten! To my treasury we must go". The woman put down the skull she was holding and went to stand sullenly at the opening of a tunnel close by her bivouac. The priest indicated to Melo Yelo he should come with them. They followed the woman a short distance into the passage and then stopped. Another hundred paces or so ahead the excavation abruptly ended; the beams of the baboon's helmet picked out a jumbled collection of boxes, crates and jars stacked there. Daystar waved impatiently at woman Forgotten. From around her neck she removed two leather thongs. She handed one to the dragonewt, which put it around its thick wrist, and the other to Melo Yelo. Threaded with hair, on each of these thongs was a tarnished silver coin and a finger bone that had been flensed of its flesh. "Go, help The Midnight Express," said Daystar to the baboon, "Don't worry, Forgotten's little baubles will protect you." Melo Yelo went down the tunnel with the oddly-named dragonewt. After they'd gone only a dozen steps they were suddenly assailed by a swarm of moaning ghosts, erupting from recesses in the walls. When Melo Yelo shone his light he saw each of these culverts contained a severed human head. They were packed in tightly with salt, and their preserved leathery faces had gaping mouths as if shouting out in horror or perhaps surprise. Having been bought up among shamans, the baboon recoiled in terror as the mad spirits assailed him. The Midnight Express simply ignored the ghosts and kept walking, and soon Melo Yelo understood they could not harm either of them. "Yes, yes," said Daystar impatiently, gesturing to him to hurry up. With only one arm, Melo Yelo was in fact not of much help when they came to Daystar's stash of valuables. But the dragonewt knew what it was looking for. It took some time, for whatever it was seemed to be near the very bottom of the pile. Daystar's treasury contained all manner of preserved foodstuffs, barrels of salted mock pork, amphorae of oil and wine, an assortment of trade goods, and more. As he helped drag boxes out of the way, Melo Yelo noticed that several were filled with the same packet of wrapped leaves that Cornspot had given him. He remembered his human friend's advice, and reminded himself he needed to give Daystar his offering when the moment presented itself. Eventually The Midnight Express found what it was looking for: a very large, very heavy wooden box. Even it grunted with effort lifting the box clear. The dragonewt carried the box back to where Daystar was waiting expectantly, once again completely ignoring the ghosts. Melo Yelo followed behind and did his best to ignore the evil spirits too. He found it helped by keeping his gaze away from the alcoves. The Midnight Express set the box down before the priest and handed his leather necklace back to the woman. Forgotten snapped her fingers at Melo Yelo, demanding his too. He handed the talisman over and, with a look of bored contempt, she abruptly turned and left. Daystar hissed and spat excitedly at the dragonewt. The box had been nailed shut, but with relative ease The Midnight Express wrenched off the lid. Daystar pounced and started removing handfuls of old, dried straw. With a cry of elation he then drew out something wrapped in a cloth: it was a strange looking dagger, gleaming dully but very, very sharp. It was made of stone. The old priest smiled, and once again licked his lips with tips of his split tongue. And there was still another object in the box, far heavier. Wide-eyed and eager, Daystar nodded, and with another grunt the dragonewt began lifting it out.
    8 points
  2. HeroQuesting is an awful lot like playing an RPG (or a LARP), if you think about it…
    8 points
  3. I don't believe anyone has done anything formal yet for Balazaring background. One of the players in my Colymar Campaign runs a Balazaring Yelmalion though so I had to come up with some background material for him. The following is explicitly for a citadel dweller in Balazar (vs. the nomadic hunter-gatherers). Hopefully it is of some use though it doesn't have much development of explicit background events. Homeland: Balazar (citadel) Starting Passions: Love (family): 60% Loyalty (temple): 60% (e.g. Sun Dome Temple) Loyalty (citadel): 60% (e.g. Elkoi) Rune Modifier: Fire +10% Homeland Skills/Weapons: Skills: Swim +10%, Dance + 5%, Sing +10%, Speak Own (Balazaring) (50), Speak Other (Tradetalk) +10%, Customs (Balazaring) (25), Herd +10%, Track +15%, Survival +10%, Hide +10%, Move Quietly +10%, Spirit Combat +15% Weapons: Dagger +15%, 1H Battle Axe +15%, 1H Spear +15%, Composite Bow +15% or Sling +15%, Javelin +10% Relevant Occupations: Apprentice Shaman, Bandit, Crafter (in citadel), Healer (in citadel), Herder (in citadel), Hunter, Scribe (in citadel), Warrior (light infantry - in citadel) Light Infantry - Balazaring Sun Dome Scan +10%, Battle +30%, First Aid +15%, Listen +10%, Hide +10%, Move Quietly +10%, Survival +10% Unit Weapons: Javelin +25%, 1H Spear +25%, Medium Shield +25% Other Weapon: 2H Spear +25% Dagger: +15% He gets this Equipment Linothorax (3 pt. protection), cuirboilli greaves and vambraces (3 pt. protection), composite helm (3 pt. protection), his weapons, 1D3 notable scars (if desired), sleeping roll, traditional Balazaring clothing, war booty worth 2d100 L Yelmalio Cult Lore (Yelmalio) +15%, Worship (Yelmalio) +20%, Meditate +5%, Area Lore (Balazar) +15%, Speak Other (Tradetalk) +20%, Sing +10%, Devotion (Yelmalio) starting at 60% (or +10%), Honor starting at 60% (or +10%) add +20% to one of the above and +15% to a second. He gets 5 points of Spirit Magic. He can choose from: Coordination (2 pt), Detect Gold (1 pt), Farsee (variable), Lantern (1 pt), Light (1 pt), Lightwall (4 pts), or Repair (variable) He gets 3 Rune Points to start. He can use these to cast Common Rune Spells or to Special Rune Spells that he has specifically sacrificed for. Yelmalio only has two special rune spells: Catseye and Sunbright. You can include both on his list of Rune Magic. He gets a Gift and its corresponding Geas from Yelmalio. Roll 1d10 for the Gift and 1d100 for the Geas to see what Teron has. (and depending on the Gift, he may need a 2nd and/or 3rd Geas) ------------------------------------------------ The player just mapped out a rough background where he was a citadel dweller whose parents were pig-herders, and subsequently Lunar slaves. The character escaped to Dykene, and joined Yelmalio temple there. The citadels with Yelmalio temples are Elkoi (which was ruled by Lunar Empire and where he was a slave) and Dykene in the far east of Balazar. There's an annual caravan between the two temples. The player drafted the following for background: He worked as a slave in Elkoi for five years, developing a deep hatred for Lunars, as well as a fear of aberrant creatures of chaos (due to events that he has repressed from memory). His cleverness gave him better treatment than many slaves, and he learned a fair amount, but he always hated his status. At age 15 (or thereabouts) he managed to escape Elkoi. He lived in the wilds well enough until he found his way to Dykene. There he managed to stay alive by doing odd jobs, hunting, gathering, etc. He hung around the small but disciplined group Sun Dome Temple spearmen, and developed a keen admiration for their candor, honor, and fairness. He’d imitate their training when no one was around, often going out into the woods to do so. At this time he swore his devotion to Yelmalio, Mercenary God of the Winter Sun and Lord of the Last Light. Trouble began brewing in Balazar, and, lured by the promise of fame and fortune, he joined a mercenary unit (little better than a militia), which had been hired to supplement the crown for a war against Elkoi and its diminishing Lunar presence. During this time, he tried creating a variety of tough-sounding nicknames, but none ever stuck, since he was so young. He fought in several skirmishes and one battle before the failed siege of Elkoi. During this siege, his militia captain deliberately led his troops to the slaughter in order to pocket more of the mercenary fees he’d collected from the king of Dykene. Teron escaped this fate as he was off hunting for provisions, but he overheard the mercenary leader gloating about it, and he hated the mistreatment of the soldiers. To Teron’s gratification, shortly afterward the mercenary leader choked on a goose bone and died, which Teron credits to Yelm’s vengeance. After the war and the Lunars’ withdrawal from Balazar, Teron continued as a mercenary. One fateful day, he hired on with a caravan, which made an unexpected side trip to Elkoi. Once he found out, he did not want to back out, because doing so would require him to reveal his status. Instead, he hoped that he would be able to pass his time there unnoticed. Unfortunately, he stumbled into one of his former owners in Elkoi, who demanded his immediate return. He escaped the area before he was forced back into slavery. With word of his status now revealed, he quickly laid a false trail, spreading word of his intent to return to the safety of Dykene, with a possible flight to the wilds around Griffin Mountain if need be. The deception in place, he headed to Dragon Pass, pushing westward deeper into Lunar territory (where no one would expect an escaped slave to run). Finally reaching Sartar (safely outside of Lunar control), he tried to fit in, but Baranthos, the Chieftain of the Ernaldori clan, refused him admittance. Instead, he had to make his living on the fringe of society. He got by as a mercenary... really, not much more than a hard-luck vagrant with a spear. He wanted to go further south to see the massive Sun Dome Temple of which he had heard, but had no funds and no idea of where to go. I noted: Elkoi in Balazar is in Lunar hands from 1563-1622. The Great Winter approaches but does not cover Balazar (would have been strange winds all year though coming down from the north-northeast) Now there certainly could be a failed siege of Elkoi by the Kings of Trilus and Dykene somewhere in the 1617-23 period. Maybe best in 1621-3, roughly 3-4 years ago, possibly coinciding with the Great Winter. If Teron escapes to Dragon Pass, then most likely in 1623 after the Great Winter - perhaps has heard that conditions are better there again. He reaches Clearwine somewhere in 1623. Clearwine is both the center of the Ernaldori clan and the Colymar tribe. He's not granted clan membership as he's not an Orlanthi. But in the wake of the losses of the Great Winter, additional hands are welcomed generally in Clearwine even though the Lunar presence via King Kangharl and the nearby Lunar slave farm is still felt. Why does he stay in Clearwine and not go on to the Sun Dome Temple? As an initiate he would usually want to go there to participate in rituals and services so that he could renew his rune magic (if he has any)? The next closest Yelmalio temple is a good ways to the north in Alda-Chur among the Far Point tribes. One possibility is that he did go there, but was rejected as a backwater primitive by the Lord of the Sun Dome. Clearwine would be the closest town to then settle in. But would he have tried to still go to the Sun Dome Temple to meet at least his annual obligations to his deity?
    7 points
  4. AN UNSUNG HERO The smoke made Daystar garrulous, though most of his talk was the distant Sun: how its beating heart was growing louder, its lustrous wings, its shining scales; all this he described in loving detail. At odd times that seemed to have no regular cadence he would stop to chant, and The Midnight Express would repeat it, and then they'd expect Melo Yelo to follow. At some point – when the baboon did not know, as proper time began to drift away from him – Daystar started chanting "OU". "OU" chanted Daystar. "There is no other that knoweth thee save thy Light Priests, thou hast made them wise. In thy designs and in thy might." Although the priest was declaiming in Firespeech, somehow Melo Yelo wasn't surprised he understood perfectly. As the haiza opened his mind Melo Yelo thought back to when he was first drawn to the Golden Light of the Sun Dome, and how simple it seemed then. There were clearly more sides to Yelmalio than he knew, or even imagined. He now realised his eyes were first opened at the Cradle. There the baboon was an unsung hero, the only Sun Domer (if he could call himself that) who made it onto the deck. The Harpoon had shot gigantic chained arrows into the sides of the great boat, and Lord Invictus had ordered his Templars to clamber up the chains. Not one of them had made it to the top – trying to balance while fending off the defenders' furious rain of missiles and magic proved impossible, even for the elite of the Sun Dome's best regiments. But with his powerful arms (he had two then, he thought wistfully), Melo Yelo had swung up to the top on the underside the chain, avoiding being a target. When he leapt onto the bulwark, the baboon was astounded to see facing him on the deck a warrior in the distinctive panoply of a Yelmalion Light Son. He was clearly one of the defenders, and by the state of his amour and weapons had seen much action. Melo Yelo was temporarily dumbstruck and confused by the sight, and his opponent took the advantage to give him a great shove with his shield. The baboon fell tumbling into the water, and soon after the Sun Dome attack on the Cradle was called off. At enormous cost Lord Invictus had achieved nothing, and despite Count Solanthos's boasts to Governor Sor Eel, the Cradle escaped free. Melo Yelo's wasn't the only act of conspicuous bravery that day, but there were no accolades offered to anyone by the humiliated Sun Dome leadership, let alone a baboon hanger-on that everyone laughed at and treated with pitiful scorn or (at most) amused contempt. As the silent trollkin added yet more hazia to the bowl of the hookah, Melo Yelo noticed a gaggle of Dark Detail prisoners had gathered at the foot of the mound. They were all on their knees. "OU" chanted Daystar. "Dawning, glittering, going afar and returning, all eyes see before them..." "Oh mighty Daystar, we beseech you, we must have our water!", they cried. Through the smoke Daystar looked like he had been on the cusp of something when this interruption broke his concentration. He gave an exasperated hiss to The Midnight Express. The dragonewt roared and a made a mighty leap off the mound, landing right in the midst of the prisoners and scattering them in all directions. When it returned to take up the position behind the priest, several of the unfortunate inmates lay dead. The others had fled back to their places, some badly hurt. "OU" chanted Daystar.
    7 points
  5. I'm considering putting together a Jonstown book on Ralios and I'm putting together a history of Ralios combined with some bits of homebrew to fill in gaps and spice up the play dynamic. I am taking all comments and criticism! Recent Ralian History Anything in Italics is not strictly canon, but is placed to infill gaps. This history goes from when grandparents are at adulthood until the adulthood of the player characters. 1561 - Grandparent is born. 1582 - Grandparent comes of age, parent is born. Marost is seized by Naskorion. 1595 - The Partanites attack a gathering of the Ancient Beasts Society in a raid called the Beast Butchery. The Count of Jorglaban’s brother is one of those killed in the raid. 1597 - Fleet of Jorglaban is sunken and the ruler of Tinaros is lost at the bottom of Lake Felster along with his regalia. His widow sacrifices her three children to get revenge and they say she lay with the Devil. Soon, Argin Terror is born. 1599 - Fleet of Partan is sunken by the Estali league. Rumours spread that this was done at the exact moment that Argin Terror uttered his first word. 1600 - Partan is razed by the Estali League. Rumours spread that this was done at the exact moment that Argin Terror took his first step. 1604 - Parent comes of age, character is born. 1605 - Surantyr the Non-Heretic overcomes magical ordeals atop Top of the World Mountains and experiences the Chariot of Lightning revelations. 1608 - Surantyr becomes master of Valantia. 1610 - Jarabolos is conquered by the Duke of Naskorion. 1611 - Surantyr conquers Fiesive and unifies Otkorion. 1613 - Kadesos (a city known for the quality of its kafl leaf) is conquered by the Duke of Naskorion. 1615 - Seshnela controls Dangim after the count is killed and replaced with a rival member of his family by the King of Seshnela. 1616 - Utorost is conquered by Naskorion 1617 - The Guild of Chaos Monks began their uprising in Dainmol. 1619 - The city of Dainmol is retaken by the Prince. 1619 - The army of Sentanos is destroyed by Surantyr's forces after the Hero Garundyer of the Seven Storms liberates Siglolf Cloudcrusher. This battle is thereafter known as the Battle of Falling Stones. 1621 - Meime the Tournament King marries Ingye the Queen of Galin. Scandalously, they are actually in love. 1621 - Great Winter, Year One. The Seventh Malkioni Council occurs. Surantyr the Non-Heretic is amongst those summoned and is severely injured before making his escape. At the same time, the Dangans perform a ritual to bind / harm Orlanth at Hreler Amali. One or both of these events causes Orlanth's magic to become greatly weakened in Ralios. 1622 - The trolls of Guhan complete a magical ceremony generations in the making. They move across Ralios with the help of the Argan Argar Chain although they are helped and hindered by humans all along the way. 1622 - Great Winter, Year Two. It is broken by a small group performing the Lightbringer ritual at Hreler Amali. 1623 - King Guilmarn invades Safelster to eliminate all Arkati. 1624 - Broo invasion from Dorastor into Karia. Hezel Darong is a new Chaos deity worshipped by their powerful shaman. 1624 - The Duke of Naskorion is wed in a ritual that takes place in utter darkness. Those few men who are invited must crawl on their hands and knees to find their place. It is said that he has married a powerful troll-wife. 1625 - Argin Terror performs a great ritual that Taps all Chaotic beings within Tinaros. For a brief moment, Tinaros is completely free of Chaos, before the energy flows forth transforming Tinaros into the City of Terror. 1625 - The Safelstran states finally unify and fight back against King Guilmarn, revealing new secrets of Arkat as they do so. During a battle at Dangk, Archon Foyalfine of Azilos betrays the alliance at a critical moment, leaving Guilmarn weakened but undefeated and the forces of Safelster scattered. 1625 - The Duke of Naskorion declares that he is allied with Guhan and Halikiv and titles himself the Stygian Emperor in a ritual that transforms him into a troll.
    7 points
  6. I've only read parts of this collection of genius, but I can contribute what I believe to be an original dumb theory of my own: Ginna Jar, of Lightbringers fame, is the same entity as "She Who Waits" of the Seven Mothers -- an entity whose function in the Universe is similar to the Horned Man, that of cathartic change. She is not a "spirit of enterprise" or a wyter, but more of a figure who guides the collective subject through the painful catharsis to a new form, "same as the old, but different." She/they may also be the same as the entity Arachne Solara, who performed this function with the whole cosmos, during the Ritual of the Net.
    7 points
  7. A SUN DOME PALLADIUM *** Everyone in Sun County knows there is a legendary object in the temple vaults that guarantees the sanctity of the Sun Dome. They take great comfort from the fact that, despite all the vicissitudes and indignities they the people suffered in the Solitude of Testing, the Great Temple itself has never fallen. This cube-shaped artefact, a gift of Ernalda to Yelmalio, her husband-protector, is the hexomino. Inside it resides the Temple's defending Spirit Guardians. When the Sun Domers purged themselves of draconic influences in the aftermath of the Dragonkill War(1100 ST), they abandoned their old temple and built a new one. Answering their prayers, Yelmalio sent the Sun Folk the great spirit Feshoaar to dwell in the altar of the freshly-consecrated Sun Dome. In an interesting mythological parallel with Umath's Camp of Orlanthi legend, Sun County too originally had Six Spirit Guardians – north, south, east, west, above and below, one for each face of the hexomino. The legend is Feshoaar subjected the original Spirit Guardians to Yelm's cleansing fire and found that of the six, five emerged from the flames pure. Together, they righteously drove away the sixth, the Guardian of Above, whose draconic urges were too deeply ingrained. They were then to be bound again into the hexomino, which Feshoaar had commanded the people to retrieve from the deconsecrated temple where it lay broken in pieces. But the truth is only five of the hexomino's seven parts were recovered intact from the Old Sun Dome. The Guardian of Above's part simply could not be found. Successive Custodians of the Old Sun Dome fruitlessly searched for the missing piece for many years afterwards, until it gradually passed from memory. The part associated with the Guardian of Below had been smashed into many pieces by the furious mob as they desecrated the temple. When reassembling the hexomino, the Mostali who helped the Sun Folk construct the new temple did what they could to put together the Guardian of Below's broken fragments. As befit its ties to the earth, the Guardian of Below had a feminine aspect. It served to defend the temple from subterranean attack and, by extension, from trolls and other Darkness creatures. Several hundred years ago during the horrors of the Solitude of Testing, its piece in the hexomino shattered to dust defending the temple against rampaging Uz. The aggregate the Mostali had used to repair it was obviously inferior.* The people of Sun County's faith in the hexomino remains rock solid. But they might be disquieted to know that two of its components – that of the banished and forgotten Guardian of Above and now equally forgotten Guardian of Below – are today mere dummy parts. Unlike the genuine pieces that were fashioned from matter taken from the very Sky Dome itself, these replacements are of baser stone. They in fact have no special properties whatsoever, other than helping the hexomino retain its Earth rune cube shape. Hector the Wise hopes that is enough. This particular knowledge remains a deep cult secret. *** From the box, the Midnight Express lifted out a solid, heavy object. It looked something like a large "⅃ "-shaped block, deep blue in colour with shimmering flecks of white. Melo Yelo was nonplussed. "A part of the Sky Dome, praise Yelmalio!," explained Daystar, though this didn't help the baboon's understanding at all. "Come, we must prepare." "Prepare for what?" thought the baboon uneasily, as he followed the strange light priest back into the chamber. *The Light Guide at the time was a member of the Goldbreath family and he swept up the broken remains of that piece and gathered what psychical remnants he could of the Guardian of Below's annihilated spirit. With these fragments he fashioned a magical artefact which became a family heirloom. It is now worn by Lady Vega Goldbreath (it's her Protection-10 matrix, see Sun County p.13). The 'Guardian of Below' continued on, this time as a new cult rank, the leader of an elite band of troll-killers. As the troll threat abated, the position evolved into that of the more general 'Guardian of Sun County', the leader of the militia: this is Vega's current position in the temple hierarchy. She is the first such Goldbreath to hold the rank. [Just reiterating that the Light Lady Vega, a female rune lord of Yelmalio, wearing her family heirloom, is the first Goldbreath to hold the rank of *Guardian* of Sun County. Hmmmm]
    7 points
  8. I know you're knocking the idea, for some ironic reason that doubtless makes sense to you, but why not join the Jonstown Compendium Creators' Circle on Facebook and check out the Creators Helping Creators directory? It lists more than three dozen community members, all keen to help their fellow creators with editing, proofreading, layout, art, maps, handouts, playtesting, and print prep (among other services). Your assumption that everybody wants to be paid is incorrect: some creators will work for a share of royalties, some will barter services ("I'll draw you a map if you'll check my text"), and some will work for free. (I like being able to pay artists, myself: the great thing about my first scenario -- the one with the public domain clip-art -- doing so well is that I've been able to afford original Gloranthan art for everything since). And you don't have to do this on your own: we've seen successful creative teams coalescing around the Jonstown Compendium. Just check out the work done by the Beer With Teeth collective, or Austin Conrad's merry band of helpers, or the Phipp/Kirshtein mutant extravaganza, or our own Sandheart shield wall. I agree that that group is the first and most obvious place to look: I mention the group in my forum .sig for a reason, and I direct people there all the time. If you haven't yet joined because you didn't think there'd be anything useful, you made a mistake, but it's one that can easily be fixed. If you're steering clear of the Zuckerberg Panopticon on principle, email me and I'll help you out without violating your personal honour code. If you're obstinately ignoring everything Chaosium tells you about how to get the most out of the Jonstown Compendium, you'll be ignoring this post as well. Psych! Some of the Jonstown Compendium's best-sellers were laid out in MS Word, nothing fancier. And none of them, to the best of my knowledge, has ever been exported to MOBI/EPUB, so I'm not sure why you mention that? It's actually much less confusing than you are trying to make it sound. If your word processor can export as PDF, you have all you need to publish on the Jonstown Compendium. If it can't, find a friend who can help you out. Please don't put potential contributors off by making it sound harder than it is. There are plenty of people who want to help you. There are communities set up to support people in your position. Finally, I am Chaosium's ambassador for the Jonstown Compendium community content programme. I can guarantee you that an email to nick.brooke@chaosium.com will get a sympathetic and constructive response: so why not try it some time? I've reviewed manuscript submissions, provided feedback on potential projects, cleared up confusion about what is and isn't allowed in our community content programmes. I enjoy encouraging prospective authors: it's part of my job. (And if for some twisty reason of your own, which you certainly don't need to explain to me, you'd prefer not to deal with me, reach out to my colleagues: Allan Carey or Bridgett Jeffries. We are all here to help) EDITED TO ADD: for a sense of perspective: in its prime (1999-2009), Tradetalk magazine published on average maybe 60 pages per year. All Jonstown Compendium publications together added up to 3,900 pages from its launch to year-end 2020, plus 3,200 pages more in 2021 YTD. We think the JC is pretty accessible to creators; we doubt the zine model would scale up as well. But if a former zine crew wants to start producing stuff for the JC, go for it! Check the FAQ, ask me if you have any concerns about what's allowable, and show us your stuff! (That's how we created Glamour, after all)
    7 points
  9. From Jeff's recent FB post on the topic: One of the more beloved minor cultures among many players are the Aeolians - sorcery-using Orlanthi or Orlanth-worshiping Malkioni that live in the south of Heortland. Now it is worth keeping in mind that there are somewhere around 50k Aeolians in total, maybe more, maybe less. That puts the total number of Aeolians at around the size of five Sartarite tribes. Now that puts some big limitations on them - the other is that they are in contact with the God Forgot "atheists", who also number about 50k. These two are separate communities and religions, even if they are often conflated together by other Kethaelans. > If we assume that less than 5% of the adult population have learned sorcery, there might be 1500 people with sorcery skills among the Aeolians. For comparison, there might be 1000 Lhankor Mhy initiates with some sorcery skills in all of Sartar. But Nochet might have twice that many Lhankor Mhy initiates that know sorcery, probably more. > I tend to think of the Aeolians as being roughly analogous to the Druze or Yazidi. They are an ethnoreligious group that are always a minority outside of their strongholds. > As an aside, I do not believe that the Aeolians try to convert anyone. I am not sure they even accept converts!
    6 points
  10. THE WHITE BULL IS COMING "OUR" chanted Daystar. How long Melo Yelo had been here sitting on the rug he couldn't remember because his mind and perhaps his spirit had gone free. He soared out like a vrok hawk over the Sun Dome lands, chasing the rising Sun. In his vision he saw the Sun Dome Temple and Vega Goldbreath, the Light Lady who condemned him. She was in the very same Meeting Chamber. Spread on a table before her was an assortment of maps outlining the Sun County defenses and detailed reports about troop movements and supplies. Candles low on their wicks showed she'd been up all night, and her face was creased with fatigue and worry. Suddenly the Light Lady looked up, and it was like she was staring at him straight in the eye. There was a look of doubt on Lady Vega's face, and to Melo Yelo hopefully a sense of resolution that things were not right and she must put them so. "OUR" chanted The Midnight Express. The baboon's spirit then travelled out onto the plains of Prax. Everywhere he could see nomads on the move, kicking up vast dust clouds, all converging on a single spot in distance. Curious, he made to go there, but first he saw the Paps. It was high noon, and Lord Belvani was in earnest council with a strange assortment of people: some were native Praxians but others were foreigners. Their leader seemed to be a youngish man with a distinctive white bull tattoo on his torso; he'd noticed that marking on many of the nomads too as he'd swept past them. At the leader's side was another Yelmalion: to his surprise Melo Yelo realised it was the Light Son who had bested him on the Cradle! He wanted to swoop in for a closer look when Lord Belvani caught his eye. It was almost like he nodded at him, as if everything was right, and to carry on with the Plan. But what was the plan? And then he soared to where the nomads were converging: it was the oasis of Moonbroth, famed for its geysers and its mystic oracle. He'd travelled through there once, long ago, on the way to the Monkey Ruins, but the place of pilgrimage no longer resembled what he remembered. The site was now a fortified camp of the Lunars and surrounding the oasis were vast concentric fields of caltrops, stretching in a perimeter thousands of paces out from the center. These vicious spikes were a total surprise to the Praxians when the Lunar Empire defeated them here years ago, but would they have the same impact now? Marching along a complicated pathway through the caltrops were the glittering Sun Dome Templars, answering the command of the Lunar governor. At the head of the parade was Count Invictus, walking proud but with his baboon arm concealed in his cloak. Melo Yelo wanted to put his spirit before him too, but try as he might Invictus would not give him his eye. "OUR" chanted Melo Yelo, as he felt his spirit return to the chamber deep under Pent Ridge. The Count took his Templars on, leading them towards Moonbroth and the setting Sun.
    6 points
  11. SMOKE, SMOKE, SMOKE From Daystar's treasury they returned to the priest's place of prominence in the center of the large cavern. There, to Melo Yelo's great relief, he was at last able to have something to drink. The wooden bucket from the well was thoroughly crusted in salt, but Daystar still urged him to partake. The baboon was initially hesitant, but found that the water tasted cold and pure. It was then that he noticed the inside of the bucket was lined with a lustrous deep green metal: did that somehow remove the salt from the water? Meanwhile Daystar fussed with the block, getting The Midnight Express to set it on his rug so the jutting part stuck out to the left: ⅃. When it was positioned to his satisfaction Daystar placed the stone knife on top of it then sat down, cross-legged. The dragonewt took up its position behind him. One of the mutilated trollkin methodically went about setting up his hookah pipe again, while the other visited one of the prisoners' braziers, returning with a scuttle of hot coals. Melo Yelo was unsure what to do next. He'd given Lord Belvani's message to the priest, but could he now take his leave? Then he remembered Cornspot's gift packet. This he deferentially offered to Daystar, who took it and chuckled. By the priest's side was a small basket, full of the same wrapped packets. He carelessly tossed in Melo Yelo's offering and picked up his pipe. "Come sit, join me now," he said to the baboon, "While we await your master we must smoke, smoke, smoke seven days." Seven days? thought Melo Yelo. Daystar must have seen his consternation because his voice raised to a higher pitch and with a wide-eyed gleam he said, "Yes, we must smoke until we see the Sun and find the Dragon. In our minds we will do the Dance of Pure Being. We must smoke, smoke, smoke to attain Utuma!" One of the silent trollkin unwrapped a packet of leaves from the basket and smeared its contents into the bowl of the hookah. The other solemnly took the long-handled pipe from the priest. It then began to suck in and puff prodigiously. When smoke was literally coming out of the slits where its ears had been, it gravely handed the fully-primed pipe back to Daystar, and withdrew. The priest took a tremendous puff of his own, then handed the pipe to Melo Yelo. Cautiously, the baboon took a puff. Although he'd never used a hookah pipe before, he'd already recognised the taste and smell of the smoke: the baboon shamans used this stuff too, to help commune with the spirits. What the Sun Dome folk called "dummy", the humans up in Pavis knew as hazia. His baboon kin had their own name for it, and simply threw the dried plants on a fire. Everyone in the troupe sitting around was encouraged to breathe in deeply. Eventually you would see your ancestors, sitting there with you. "O" said Daystar. "O" said The Midnight Express. The priest looked expectantly at Melo Yelo. "O?" he said hesitantly, and Daystar nodded, seemingly satisfied. The baboon politely took another puff and handed the pipe back to the priest. Melo Yelo began to feel his mind open, but the mood was broken by a voice calling out from the bottom of the slope. It was one of the prisoners, one of the down-on-their-luck adventurer types. He was there on his knees. "Oh mighty and worshipful Daystar," he called out, "Your honour, we must come to get our daily water." "Pah, begone with you!", said Daystar, waving him away. And then took another puff and said "O".
    6 points
  12. 6 points
  13. It is ridiculously easy to use the Jonstown Compendium template to create reasonable-looking supplements. There is no reason why an author couldn't get other people to write articles or short sections and put them together to form a supplement. I had work from Tal Meta, Nikk Effingham and Leon Kirshtein for the temple of heads, for example. Austin Conrad asked me to write something for Treasures of Glorantha. So an ensemble of authors works.
    6 points
  14. We faced many conspiracies against the Lunar Empire, sometimes even all Glorantha, but our PCs eventually "fixed" them. A cabal heroquested so that instead of the Goddess defeating Gbaji, he defeated her. They then took over the Empire and had to be stopped, with unexpected aid from Gbaji's still-existing vampire wife and Arkat. Over-zealous Deezolans defeated and imprisoned Humakt so that nobody would die. (See Torchwood, "Miracle Day") A combination Putin/Richard III Danfive was "temporarily" put in charge of the Empire (the PCs did this while "fixing" another issue), imprisoned or killed all the prospective Emperors, and, using alliances with Delecti and Trolls, rules the Empire. Jar-Eel had been killed in the previous campaign and was replaced by "Jar-Uz"
    6 points
  15. I would recommend Wilfrid Thesiger's masterpiece Arabian Sands. He was the first European to cross the Empty Quarter and visit the Liwa Oasis (he did it in disguise which was a great effort given he was an upper class Englishman who was 6'4" with blue eyes). Thesiger vividly describes Bedu hospitality, and the challenges of navigating your way through an incredibly hostile environment and tribes who distrusted or (usually) hated each other. The rules of hospitality in the deep desert are sacrosanct and intricate. I would best summarise them by saying it was possible to be hospitable without being friendly. Here is a telling excerpt: “Gaunt men in rags and hungry-looking children had greeted me, and bade me welcome with the sonorous phrases of the desert. Later they had set a great dish before me, rice heaped round a sheep which they had slaughtered, over which my host poured liquid golden butter until it flowed down on to the sand; and when I protested, saying 'Enough! Enough!', had answered that I was a hundred times welcome. Their lavish hospitality had always made me uncomfortable, for I had known that as a result of it they would go hungry for days. Yet when I left them they had almost convinced me that I had done them a kindness by staying with them” BTW, this all happened in 1948. Some of the people he encountered, the first European they had ever seen, would in their lifetime have been able to drive on a four lane freeway from the Liwa Oasis to Abu Dhabi, which in 1948 would have been three week's travel by camel. During my time in the UAE I visited Liwa many times for work (we had a campus there) and holidays, an amazing place. The highlight of the year is their Camel Beauty Contest.
    5 points
  16. THE SOURCE OF YOUR IGNOMINY "OUR", chanted Daystar. Oh living Yelm, born in the Sky every day, He begat his august son, Yelmalio, Son of Sun, Who wears the mantle of his father's beauty. "Can you see it?," Daystar cried excitedly, pointing at the swirling yellowish smoke at the roof of the cavern. Through the haze Melo Yelo did see a vision of a resplendent ball of light. And flying around it in a swirling pattern was a wyrm - something like Windwhistler, but golden and more majestic, more divine. "When Solanthos cast me down here they cursed me. My geas is if I am exposed to Yelm's Light, I will burn. But that is only thissssss body," Daystar said with a hiss. "And now your master has told me the Spirit of Above has returned in material form. I have its stone; it took me many years of searching in the Old Sun Dome, and years still to smuggle the stone here. "But if I sacrifice myself on its stone will I be reborn inside it, the Guardian of Above's body will be mine. And then I will be free!" Melo Yelo was still looking at the ceiling. Perhaps old priest's rheumy eyes were not not as keen as the baboon's, for Melo Yelo was sure the great flying wyrm had a golden armoured rider on its back. Who was that? "And you, you my friend must do utuma with me: for your service the Sun Dragon shall surely decree you will be reborn a most splendid man," said Daystar complacently, taking a great draw on the pipe. As more smoke billowed to the ceiling Melo Yelo saw a vision of the Yelmalion he could be: the very visage of his fabled helm, and whole perfect human body too, made flesh. But Melo Yelo didn't want to be human. He still wanted to be the best Yelmalion he could, but he wanted to stay a baboon. For that's what he was. But they will never accept you. Now Daystar was in his head. Look how they've treated you. Belittled your heroism, ignored your bravery. Kept silent when they were the guilty ones. And with that Melo Yelo's spirit went soaring again, out over the plains to Moonbroth. On the way he could see a thousand campfires, with followers of the White Bull from almost every tribe. They were chanting and dancing of how on the morrow they would sweep the Lunar Empire out of their sacred homeland forever. He passed through the great circle of defenses around the oasis. The soldiers on watch nervously looked out at the campfires and could even hear the singing, but their officers complacently assured them they were safe behind their massive fields of caltrops. Next he was in a well-appointed tent. The panoply of its owner rested on a stand: it was gold, but the gold was tarnished, and there was no vambrace for the left arm. Lying in the cot asleep was Count Invictus, still wrapped in his golden cloak, still concealing his left arm. Sssee him there, he's the sssourccce of your pain, why they laugh at you, why they mock. The source of your ignominy, he who turned away after all you had done, all you have sssacrificed, hissed the voice in his head. Invictus shifted restlessly in his sleep and the cloak slipped loose. His baboon arm, given freely to him by Melo Yelo at the Painted Wall so he could contain Daga with his own, was revealed. "OURO", chanted Daystar.
    5 points
  17. Btw, for Balazar events, Wyrms Footnotes #15 has a few noted in the Army Activity tables, specifically: Tusk Rider raids in: 1602, 1611, 1614 Praxian raids in: 1607 Elkoi warriors could have joined Tarsh in the following events: Stinkwood (i.e. Tusk Rider) invasions in: 1606, 1609 Elkoi warriors or Yelmalions from Balazar could have been hired as skirmishers for any Lunar Tarsh campaign. The main date in Griffin Mountain is 1564 when the Lunars take Elkoi and Bykotus becomes King. At some point Glyptus, probably mid- to late-40s as of 1616, became King (perhaps ~1600?). You could probably fit one generation in between him and Bykotus. Yalaring Monsterslayer is 31 in 1616. Presumably conquered Trilus in the period 1610-1615 (I'd suggest pre-1613). Overthrew the Gadaringer dynasty. Let the Lightbringers into Trilus - these are likely refugees/exiles from Starbrow's Rebellion and reach Balazar ~1614 after some time wandering. Skilfil Heartpiercer is 40 in 1616. His wife died 10 years before. His eldest children (Starnia, Eucleia) though are in early 20s. He probably came to the throne in his early 20's, so late 1590's. Probably feasts and celebrations in the citadels when new kings took the thrones.
    5 points
  18. Oh Gagarthi don't attack when it is stupid for them to attack. At least not usual. But these are folk outlawed from tribal society and expelled from their religions - they end up with Gagarth because he's the only one that will take them. They band together because they have to - I doubt they trust each other, but they need each other into order to survive in a hostile world.
    5 points
  19. Do I agree with David Scott's interpretation? Well, I have another viewpoint, just based on reading the texts. And I thank you for the motivation to study the sorcery chapter of the RQiG rules. This is what I read: RQiG occupations pp.63-73 are part of the six cultures outlined on pp.24-27 and 103-133 of RQiG. These are archetype jobs. In the limited geographic area that is so defined, there is no usual employment as "sorceror", any more than there is a job of 'rune magic user' or 'spirit magic user". There is employment as a "philosopher", or as a "scribe". "Philosopher' appears to be a little valued occupation, since its Ransom is 150L, less than a farmer's or a fisher's ransom. This implies to me that Diogenes is the model, rather than the Zzaburi. Just as another adventurer will start with Farming skill and never use it as an adventurer, so the philosopher will start with Orate skill - and will have occasion to use it as an adventurer. It's character background, I don't have any heartburn over it. As I read RQiG, it is implied that people from those six cultures will not have a career path that easily leads them to top level sorcery knowledge, nor full time employment doing sorcery. This implies to me that no starting character from the six cultures will know more sorcery than the Lankhor Mhy cult or the "philosopher" employment provides. (Lankhor Mhy scribes may learn sorcery, but the brief cult writeup in RQiG just says "the initiate is taught to master the Truth Rune and the technique of Command" and by default the GM is to determine the availability of further teaching and teachers in his or her campaign. The list of LM sorcery spells taught is short. The game mechanic for achieving mastery of other runes or techniques is explained as an INT+POW roll p.384. I myself would require some undefined schooling before making that roll, but there is nothing official to back me up; I am curious about what you think. We can't get anything from the LM writeup in Cult Compendium because that is an RQ2 book and sorcery only came in with RQ3. We all await the forthcoming gods book.). If you want your character to come from outside the six cultures defined in RQiG, such as Malkioni or Aeolians = people coming from Fronela or God Forgot; or from the Lunar schools of magic in Peloria, then [1] There are references for the Malkioni and Aeolians on how to get the masteries and the techniques before adulthood, essentially in character generation, pp.388-389 of RQiG; not so for the Lunars. Techniques and masteries are "not skills". I don't see any more references for learning the sorcery spells, which are skills, even though no spaces for them are provided on the character sheet. Nor do I see what the starting skill would be if the sorceror creates new spells. [2] All the additional canon you have to go on for those cultures is the Guide to Glorantha, which is an atlas and encyclopedia but not rules. [3] You are getting into area in which Chaosium has not yet published a culture book. Jonstown Compendium does include fan writeups of the West, but not being Chaosium material they may be superseded. In this situation neither your nor David Scott's interpretation can be 'right' or 'wrong". There are many unknowns about sorcery which would cause me not to allow starting characters as working sorcerors in my campaign because frankly I don't know how to GM it. I will continue to watch and see how how those unknowns are getting filled in. Thanks for the discussion.
    5 points
  20. The late 1620s see the re-establishment of a necessary and prophesied Darkness + Earth + Harmony power in Kethaela and Dragon Pass: the Only Old One returns, either personally or in the form of a troll (or man (or both/neither)) embodying his principles and influence in the Middle World, in the same way that Argrath seeks to embody Orlanth. The Shadow Tribute is first re-established after the Battle of Dunstop, when Fazzur Wideread offers it to the new Shadowlord on behalf of formerly-Lunar Tarsh in exchange for protection and intercession in peace negotiations with Argrath's Sartar. More Shadow Tributes follow as the woes of the Hero Wars increase and the people of central Genertela reach back to the survival magics of the Great Darkness, where the Only Old One's pacts lie waiting to be renewed. The New Black Palace becomes a place of refuge for the people and gods of the former Unity Council lands when the ocean rises in the Flood. When the Hero Wars reach their climax, and the Monster Empire comes slouching and oozing south, there will be a Unity Army to meet it, to win the Unity Battle in the Middle World and change the course of Argrath's Lightbringer Quest in the otherworlds..
    5 points
  21. I'm a complete noob to the world of Glorantha. I see there are many people here with a far greater grasp of the legends and lore than I could hope to acquire without years of study. I really wanted to do a painting of the Golden Gate Palace, which I can't seem to find existing images for but I read that the street that leads up to the Palace is lined with the statues of the Ascended Masters. This seems like a good vantage point but I don't know which masters are likely to be statues in Northpoint around 1620. I also don't really know what architectural style would fit Northpoint best but if that is a question for a different group I understand.
    5 points
  22. Each will have nice handouts. Not sure on the number of volumes. Gazetteers would make sense, plus we are thinkig of doing a starter set for each of these as well. Keeper Screens are less likely. They don't sell as well as you might think. That's not saying "no", just not saying "yes" at this time.
    5 points
  23. For me, the people of the Wastelands practise a brutal form of hospitality. they will offer food and drink to anyone who asks for it, for they do not know when they will themselves require food or drink. They will not imprison, enslave or kill guests, unless the guests attack them first. However, they will happily let the guests go and them chase them down afterwards, depending on the circumstances. Agimori, however, never take slaves, so would only hunt to punish those who break their hospitality. Oasis Folk will offer food to all who come to their Oasis. However, their food tends to be variations on a theme. If you don't like dates, for example, then you will be disappointed on a date Oasis, as they will offer you a variety of dates, stuffed dates, roasted dates, date wine and date surprise (Yes, it's a date). When I worked on an archaeological dig, the chap in charge told a story of hiking around Greece when he was 18, looking at the various sites. He often had no money and relied on the hospitality of the locals. Once he met an old couple who gave him a bed to sleep in and a meal, basically a plate of mutton stew and lentils, he finished it and they put another plate in front of him, which he could barely finish, then they out another plate in front of him. Panicking slightly, he realised that they would not stop until he was full, so he ate some, thanked them and then said he could eat no more. Apparently they looked so relieved, for they must have thought that he would eat all their food.
    4 points
  24. IT IS TIME TO DANCE... "OURO", chanted Daystar. Melo Yelo blinked and shook himself awake. He was back in the cavern surrounded by a fug of yellow smoke. He was unclear on where he'd been. His arm ached - his missing left arm that is. What had just happened? The priest handed him the pipe and waved at the ceiling. "It is done. The time of the Dragon Sun draws closer, the time for utuma! We must continue to smoke, smoke, smoke, and our spirits, yours and mine, will dream the Dance of Pure Being," he said. "OUROB" said the Midnight Express. This was the first time the dragonewt had changed the chant. "The sublime moment of Creation will soon be upon us!" Daystar exclaimed. "Belvani offered me no release from this dark pit. Pah! He only wanted me to confirm what he already suspected was true. Oh how he will be surprised when I assume the form of his precious Guardian of Above!" Melo Yelo wasn't clear what was going on, but he was certain this was not part of Lord Belvani's plan. The old priest's eyes glistened. "When you prostrate yourselves before the Sun Dragon will be the moment I shall eat him, and you, you reborn can lead the Sun Folk under the watch of my slitted eye!" He cackled maniacally. Daystar reached for the stone knife. "Come," he said to Melo Yelo, "It is time to Dance..." One of his trollkin servants was tugging at his sleeve. Throughout this smoking ritual, Daystar had blithely tuned out the piteous pleas of the Dark Detail prisoners as their croaking for water grew ever fainter. For this interruption he gave the trollkin a positively murderous look. But his servant glumly pointed to the basket by his side: it was empty! The other trollkin was already smearing the last remaining package of hazia into the bowl of the hookah. "Aieee!", screamed Daystar. He turned in wide-eyed panic to The Midnight Express and spoke urgently with spits and hisses. In his mind, Melo Yelo could understood what was being said: "Go at once to my Treasury, we must have more hazia! Bring it, bring it all, the moment of utuma is almost upon us!" The Midnight Express strode over to the entrance that led to Daystar's store of goods. The woman Forgotten got up from her resting spot and went through into the tunnel with the dragonewt. A few moments later a deep-throated roar erupted from the tunnel. Then Forgotten came out of the tunnel again, with a smirk on her face. In her hand she was twirling one of her tarnished silver and finger bone necklaces. What she'd done was given the protective talisman to the dragonewt, and then palmed it. He was now in spirit combat with two dozen gibbering Mad Head ghosts. Forgotten's reappearance swinging her amulet must have been a signal to the other desperately thirsty inmates. Those still capable sprung from their places and immediately charged up the mound crying out hoarsely. Daystar's trollkin servants, silent until now, fled with high-pitched squeals. It took a moment or two for Daystar to comprehend what was happening. He reacted in furious indignation and screamed with spittle-flecked rage. Then, taking a deep breath, he prepared to unleash powerful magic. But before he could do so, he was caught from behind. Forgotten had looped one of her leather thongs around his neck and started strangling him. The hookah pipe was knocked flying in the rush of the prisoners, but they ignored Melo Yelo and the priest in their haste to get to the well. A fight erupted over the bucket. Meanwhile, Daystar tried to make a few futile jabs behind him with the stone knife, but Forgotten had garrotted many victims before. He then came up with a new idea: Daystar turned the knife around and prepared to pierce himself in the heart! He was still over the stone, and perhaps if he killed himself before he was strangled, he would yet have his chance of being reborn in the Guardian of Above. But Melo Yelo blocked the knife as Daystar attempted plunged it into his chest. It was incredibly sharp and went straight though the baboon's palm. The pain was terrible yet he gripped it with his fingers and wrenched the blade away. It was time to leave this strange and ghastly place. The Guardian of Above's block was far too heavy for Melo Yelo to carry, especially with only one arm, but the baboon fled into the darkness with the stone knife still stuck through his hand. He left the fracas in Daystar's cavern behind him and looked for a way to the surface.
    4 points
  25. In our non-canonical campaign, just entering 1627, Gringle died in Nochet. Over Sacred Time the PCs quested and brought him back to serve as Wyter for Apple Lane.
    4 points
  26. 100%! Thesiger tells a story of how he and a couple of Bedu companions were deep in the desert and hadn't eaten anything for a several days when they finally managed to catch a very scrawny hare. They were cooking it on a campfire and salivating with anticipation for the meagre fare when out of nowhere several Bedu from another tribe appeared, and approached indicating they had no hostile intent. Under the laws of hospitality Thesiger (disguised as an Arab) and his companions had to give the visitors all their food, and make polite conversation while they watched them eat every last morsel. Showing they were famished would be a major loss of face, and refusing to share would be probably have ended in violence.
    4 points
  27. Something else that might obscure cult ties is that people also often get tattoos of Runes they have a personal (and perhaps also cultural) connection to but which aren't a part of whatever cult they're a part of. Looking over the art from the adventure book in the GameMaster Screen Pack, for example, Leika has the Illusion Rune tattooed on her right hand and the Fire Rune on her neck, Asborn Thriceborn has a Fertility Rune on his right bicep and the Earth Rune on his forehead, and Dunorl Brandgorsson has Earth on his left shoulder and Harmony on his right bicep. This even though all three are devotees of Orlanth. And Eranina Chan even has the Air Rune tattooed on her right shoulder despite not having a notable affinity to that Rune at all in her write-up.
    4 points
  28. Oh behave... (imagine this being said by a Canadian with a really bad English accent).
    4 points
  29. Mythras Sorcery Calculator V2.5 – Mighty Sorcerers update Sorcery Calculator has been updated to handle invocation skills up to 400% and shaping skills of up to 400. These major skills are usually available with orchestrated casting of certain sorcery schools for the invocation but might be available also for some superbly potent individuals. This now also includes the alternate names for spells in Monster Island sorcery. Some of the spells do not have enhanced effect beyond 120 in skill but almost all do. Protected by minions these highest level sorcerers are truly potent opponents as they should probably also be played like the most intelligent enemies in the realm. Some spell examples with the skill and shaping chosen You can find the sorcery calculator here. Other articles about Sorcery Calculator Monster Island comes to Sorcery Calculator. Version 2.2 Released Sorcery Calculator Does Fioricetta, Mythic Constantinople and Goes After the Vampire Wars Sorcery Calculator V2.0 has been released – Favourite Spells and More https://notesfrompavis.blog/2021/07/21/mythras-sorcery-calculator-v2-5-mighty-sorcerers-update/
    4 points
  30. Thousands of Storm Bulls, all in one place, together. What could possibly go wrong?
    4 points
  31. There were a lot of minor differences in between these two groups. But the difference became much bigger with the Lunar occupation. Tarsh is much longer under Lunar occupation and the Lunar influences are all over the place, and the hardcore Tarshites are living in exile at Kero Fin. Sartar was conquered barely a generation ago, the Lunar influences are mostly limited to the cities, and only part of the hardcore Sartarites went to Heaortland and Whitewall, a lot of them stayed in the hills of their clan territories. In MY Glorantha the differences in bewteen the (non lunarised Tarshites and Sartarites) are: - Different dialect (Sartarites and Tarshites still have a very good chance of understanding each other) - Sartarites are Highlanders, which prefer to ride or just walking, Tarshites are Lowlanders, which prefer to use wagons and chariots - Sartarite men prefer beards, while Tarshite men prefer mustaches - Sartarites ride ponys or praxian beasts, Tarshites ride pelorian horses - Besides Ernalda Maran Gor is more commonly worshipped among Tarshites than in Sartar - Sartites are proud of their white wine (especially Clearwine), but Tarshites prefer red whine. - Sartarites are proud, Tarshites are arrogant I don´t know how much of these differences were caused by the longer influence of the Lunars, or how much are just "being Tarshite"
    4 points
  32. Gargath offers magic and community to those who've been thrown out of their original ones. Most Orlanthi are raised in a cradle of support both materially and spiritually by the network of clan and cult organizations. Once those are removed bandits, kinslayers, and other ne'er do wells seek some other kind of fellowship and support. Gargath provides this in a way that most Orlanthi can easily adapt to. In many ways, you could say that the cult of Gargath is the last step before one falls entirely off the Path of Storm altogether.
    4 points
  33. An actual tangible benefit in my game: Gagarth sends stray dogs to outlaw groups, with all the benefits dogs brings
    4 points
  34. HeroQuesting and LARP are flipsides of a reiterative Ouroboric cycle that can only be broken through Illumination. That's why "real" people are so utterly terrified of it. !i!
    4 points
  35. He Who Moves had a brother known as He Who Remains.
    4 points
  36. Nothing so crude, I assure you. Witness @Eff’s genius:
    4 points
  37. Fun fact: the circles in the sky are heavily distorted Fire runes, while the ghostly arms are made from stacked layers of Moon, Undeath, and Law runes. There are also Chaos runes in the figure's hair, and an Undeath rune held back by a Moon rune on her forehead. All too heavily filtered to be visible, I think. Anyways, I think the gorp Lunar Corporeal Light would probably be pale white, the color of titanium or platinum, as I intended it. But who can really see the future?
    4 points
  38. Between the Catcher of Souls and some wannabe wizards, I would think that the threat situation would be inverted... Fixed, and I resisted Eurmal's suggestion of Papa Jagga as edit.
    4 points
  39. You jest a little, but I’ve long felt that you could play a pretty great Glorantha game using Unknown Armies 2nd ed — Rune Lords are close enough to Godwalkers, being magical through emulation, while minor charges map pretty well onto spirit magic and major & significant to rune magic. Dunno.
    4 points
  40. Jeff's recent post on FB regarding: the Tournament of the Masters of Luck and Death: In the Tournament of the Masters of Luck and Death, participants traveled the secret pathways of the Hero Plane that tied the Holy Country together. They defined and named the powers of each Sixth, and allied with such powers as they could and obtained magical weapons and treasures. Thus armed, they engaged in magical (and physical) contests with the other contestants and with the contestant's own Shadow. This replicates the magical battles of Belintar, with each contestant magically identifying with and experiencing Belintar's experiences, and with the final victor invoking Belintar as an additional subtle body (as Mister Bondaru wrote about). In the end, the victor of the tournament IS Belintar, but also still themself. Although there are analogies to the Red Emperor, this is a very different process than how a new Red Emperor is recognized. The Tournament replicates in the Hero Plane the key mythic moments of the original contests and struggles of Belintar - which the contestants experience but IN THEIR OWN manner. This is not a rote repetition of Belintar's thamauturgical battles, but a re-experiencing of them, with the same lack of knowledge, lack of script, and creative possibilities. And it should also be remembered that both Sartar and Tarkalor participated in these contests, as did several other members of the Sartar Dynasty, and other notables (such as Broyan of Whitewall if I recall). This magical experimentation and experience had a significant influence on the Orlanthi of Sartar, and may constitute one of the key reasons (along with Argrath's incredibly diverse personal magical experiences culminating in the circumnavigation of the world) why they were able to contest with the Lunar Empire on equal terms in the Hero Wars. > One of the really amazing magical things about the Tournament of the Masters of Luck and Death is that each time it is held, the Holy Country is magically remade through its contests. Gods and spirits are again named, and perhaps with more relevant and pertinent titles, old alliances reforged and new alliances made. Each time Belintar is invoked by the winner and the Holy Country's magic and proximity to the divine realm restored. > One more important thought - if the tournament kicks you out, you lose but you still gain insight and experiences which you can carry with you. So you didn’t become the incarnation of the Holy Country, but there are consolation prizes. Q: Did Belintar create entirely new rituals, or rely (at least in part) on existing hero paths? A: Belintar did not recycle. He created. > Belintar is a very enigmatic figure and there are many misconceptions around him. Perhaps the best way to get an idea about Belintar is to participate in the Tournament of the Masters of Luck and Death and to try to understand what takes place and what the goal is. Without cheap cynicism or Procopius style secret histories.
    3 points
  41. Kickstarter has just notified us that 5718 backers pledged USD$591,470.01 to help bring our Call of Cthulhu Classic project to life. That is amazing, astounding, and awesome. It exceeded our expectations and we feel like we just rolled a special success. Thank you to all who joined us for this intense ritual to bring back some of the Great Old Ones. Our efforts certainly succeeded. As the saying from 1928 goes, "That is not dead which can eternal lie." In our case we don't have to have a lot of early Call of Cthulhu books just lying in the archives. We're bringing them back onto your gaming shelves for you to read, play, and enjoy. There's lots more info to come, but right now we wanted to focus on thanking everyone who backed the campaign for making it such a success. The Stars Were Right! And it was all down to all of you!
    3 points
  42. Thanks for posting this. It's been driving me mad for a while now. I only use Chrome for Roll20. Likewise, this is a really helpful thread. I personally have learned loads of new things to try.
    3 points
  43. A deep dive into what makes Harlem Hellfighters Never Die, from Harlem Unbound, a great scenario for Call Of Cthulhu.
    3 points
  44. While the Earth religious complexes of both groups revere Kero Fin, my impression is that Sartarite Orlanthi look towards Esrolia to learn the deep earth mysteries, while Tarshites look primarily to the Shaker Temple, and so have a greater Gorian influence on their Earth approaches.
    3 points
  45. We still distinguish between melee and missile hit location tables. After decades of RQ3, we have them memorised.
    3 points
  46. I'm sure it does, but only filled with PC adventurers who believe it has plenty to offer over everything else.
    3 points
  47. Here's some information on the cult in the Cults Book. I am not sure his cult even exists in Dragon Pass - members flee to the Wastes to survive. NATURE OF THE CULT REASON FOR CONTINUED EXISTENCE Gagarth is the deity of senseless violence, as opposed to the Storm Bull, whose brutal destruction is never without purpose. His worshipers are outlaws, cast from their own tribes. SOCIAL/POLITICAL POSITION AND POWER Gagarth’s cult has no real societal power. His raiders ravage nomad camps and settled villages, plunder herds, and steal valuables. They hunt down and brutally kill travelers. Such misfits have no standing in any Orlanthi or nomad council. PARTICULAR LIKES/DISLIKES Gagarth’s cult has no true friends. Most of his worshipers have been expelled from other cults. The sacred time rituals of both Waha and Eiritha include ritual curses designed to inhibit the Wild Hunter and keep the plains habitable for normal people. When grievous calamity threatens the Wastes, however, alliances of convenience are formed with Gagarth’s outlaws or they may be hired to perform foul deeds that would sully the hands of a noble Waha khan or Orlanth chief. THE CULT IN THE WORLD ORGANIZATION The cult of Gagarth is found throughout the Wastes and they travel even more than other nomads. They generally tend to hide out in the wilder, more barren wastelands, to avoid retribution for their evil deeds. Thus, like their god, they have been driven into the hinterland, there to remain forever.
    3 points
  48. Look at all those Death runes! Do we all get to dissolve into glowing red Lunar gorp?
    3 points
  49. Elric and Hawkmoon get off a boat in Choralinthor Bay, and through the help of Arioch (and the Runestaff) allow a portal to be opened (given Gloranthas much higher ambient magic, and a new 10,000 year Bright Empire is created.
    3 points
  50. Radical Earth mystics in Esrolia and Prax, with cells otherwere, go all-in on a project to permanently revive Genert. They hope to reduce the conflict between Yelm and Orlanth, they hope to made the Wastes verdant again, they hope to reclaim Seshna from heathen atheists, they hope to calm Maniria, they hope to liberate Darsenite and Darjiin cults from under the Celestial yoke, etc. It's an immense project taking decades and reverse engineered Godlearnerisms (like the Seven Mothers' project). It works, but not quite the way they hoped, as with all of these kinds of plans.
    3 points
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