davecake

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davecake last won the day on September 1 2016

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About davecake

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    Lhankor Mhy

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  • RPG Biography
    been playing RuneQuest in some form off and one since the mid-80s, been a fanatic Glorantha fan for the same length of time. Also play many other RPGs.
  • Current games
    Mostly Glorantha, in all its forms.
  • Location
    Perth, Australia
  • Blurb
    Lhankor Mhy Sage according to MOB. Or is it Irripi Ontor?

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  1. There were some fairly perverse aspects to the RQ3 magic economy, one of which was that there was a strong incentive to keep ones personal POW low so that you got more POW gain rolls, which for priests and shamans immediately translated into more Rune Magic or more Fetch (or more Enchantements). I always figured that there were a LOT of sorcerous magic items - sorcerers, unlike other magicians, had no obvious primary use for their POW gains, and magic items were a lot more useful to sorcerers, freeing up Free INT or boosting spells. But then, I never liked any of this. Most of the many ongoing 'lets fix sorcery' discussions in the early 90s were about making the effective Duration etc of sorcery limited by POW or something related to it, rather than skill. If you want RQ2 potions, use the RQ2 rules, or something like them. I don't think potions and the like work on the RQ3 style enchanting rules.
  2. I think spell cards are a bit of a no-brainer for Chaosium - I gather they sell ok, and the amount of time taken to create them is nowhere near the amount of editorial effort required of a several hundred page book. But they also are very very much an optional extra for this player. What I am most concerned about is getting creature stats and long cult (sorcery schools and spirit society) write ups into player hands. I expect the initial release will do an OK job at the equivalent of 'Cults of Sartar' to get us started - I want the equivalent of Cults of Terror, Gods of Glorantha, major sorcery schools, Cults of Prax (now probably animist traditions of Prax) in print as soon as we can. And I know there are a bunch of stuff that is not likely to be a commercial or creative priority for Chaosium, but I hope we get at least the minimum game information (such as a 'Gods of Glorantha' style short writeup) available quickly, even if it might take a long while for a 'long form' writeup to appear - I hope this doesn't take too long.
  3. Progressive folk magic is fairly powerful compared to the stock RQ6 version - but that models RQ2/3, so its up to you whether that is a bug or a feature. I ran a Gloranthan RQ6 game, and in it you had three (usually) Runes, which were both Passions and Magic skills. Your Rune skill was used instead of your Devotion skill for Theist Magic. Your Spirit Rune ability was also the same as your Trance ability. A grimoire was a separate Invocation skill, but every grimoire was associated with a separate Rune as well. If I was to do it again, I think that Shaping skill would be the same as your Law Rune. Binding and Exhort didn't really map to Runes at all, but represented more general magical skills (and it makes sense that RQ worked at a higher level of detail than RQ did - for example, in RQ you could have a character that was potentially very powerful but unskilled vs a character that was less powerful but more consistent, and this distinction didn't really exist in HQ, which measures more raw effectiveness. This system was fairly generous to theists as far as raw power, but restricted them a bit in flexibility - only a rare Orlanthi would be equally strong in all the gods runes, for example. This seemed to map to the HQ representation of Glorantha pretty well. Animism depended heavily on which spirits your tradition had access to, and less on your individual runes, but this again seemed to map to HQ fairly well. Sorcery more problematic, but ideas about sorcery seem to have been rapidly evolving anyway, and RQ6 sorcery was definitely more of a simple playable system than in the past (it was far more fun and flexible in play than RQ3 sorcery, while avoiding those parts of RQ3 sorcery that really bugged people. I also made it explicit that the simple folk magic spells could be used by any culture, and that commoners in a sorcerous culture would generally use Folk magic the same as theists (being simple sorcery spells that they would learn by rote with little understanding). And then a lot of what you needed in terms of spells etc was in the MRQ2 cults books, available at the time for a dollar, and the rest you could wing from RQ3. Feats a la HQ2 are a bit difficult, and I don't think there is an easy solution. A bit play it by ear, and use RQ6 Gifts where it works. When trying to do RQ6 cult write ups of Gloranthan cults, I found myself using the Gifts system quite a bit. Mysticism I had no problem with - it's clearly a well documented part of Glorantha, but for the most part its in the East Isles and Kralorela that it matters. In central Genertela in the third or second age, the only real mystic tradition you needed to deal with is Illumination, and you could either straight adapt the RQ2/3 rules for it, or model Illumination using the Mysticism rules, either worked. OK, there is Lunar Mysticism as well - you can either just treat it as 'normal magic plus Illumination', or make Lunar Black Moon Illumination into its own Mystic tradition. Unless you have a Lunar PC, you never need to worry about it. The Lunars in this system get a big advantage from being able to use their Lunar Phase for multiple Runes anyway, which gives them easy access to a wider range of magic. Mysticism also works OK for Dragon Magic. Mysticism in RQ6 isn't a great fit for my current understanding of Mysticism in Glorantha, but it is serviceable.
  4. And why wouldn't you? or Rune Metal items? These may be common categories of magic items, but that is clearly what they are. That is a very atypical example. Snakepipe Hollow, Pavis, Big Rubble, Griffon Mountain, all feature plenty of magic items. In all of them, seeking specific magic items is often a major plot driver, too. And then there is RuneMasters, which was full of characters dripping with magic items (though alas, fairly dull ones). Assuming everyone plays the game the way you do when there is ample evidence otherwise is not a strong argument.
  5. To be honest, I've never liked one use Rune Magic. If I was to run old school RuneQuest again, I'd make it simply harder to re-use - say, an initiate has to participate in a Holy day ceremony to regain it, but a priest can perform a small private ceremony to regain it more or less as they wish. I do very much like the Runepower idea for the same reason Jeff puts - the minor, flavourful and particularly close to the gods domain, spells like Wind Words or Cloud Call never got used because who would sacrifice for them when they could get another point of Shield or maybe a Thunderbolt?
  6. FWIW, I found the 'initiate trap' to be not so bad in RQ3. I had a long running RQ3 game, and the majority of PCs were some form of rune level by the end, some quite experienced and dangerous. The Acolyte status helped. I even once had a PC qualify for rune level character creation, totally within the standard rules - a fairly old Green Elf (he rolled 15 on 2d8 for prior experience), he qualified for Wood Lord immediately (that 15 gave him 15x5 =+75 to a few crucial skills). I did find that sorcerers, allegedly a big play balance problem in RQ3, were the opposite - the 'apprentice trap' was far far worse than the initiate trap. Working a sorcerer up to scary magus status very hard. And if your character was not a sorcerer with significant previous experience at the start of play, forget about trying to become one in play! The scary super sorcerers in RQ3 books were wildly unrealistic in play, and mostly made scary by having hundreds of POW points worth it items and spirits. Your actual PC sorcerers very different.
  7. The other useful source is the Belintars Book excerpt about the Aldryami http://www.glorantha.com/docs/aldryas-own-story/ in particular, this helps bridge the Guide (very god learnerised - e.g. All the gods are given their generic human name) with the version given in the MRQ book (elven deity names, etc)
  8. I did not like MRQ1 much at all. I hated the rune crystals stuff (and find it oddly ironic that Steve Perrin seems to have introduced that idea). And the two big central empires both done quite badly and confusingly, IMO. But I loved Dara Happa Stirs a lot. MRQ2 was an obvious significant in most ways. Some parts very well done, like animism. RQ6 more of the same. RQ6 and the Chaosium RQG project seem to have very different goals. RQ6 was an attempt to make a quite modern RQ, as much as that venerable game can be, and quite a few very good ideas, and some very modern features (like clear directions on how to tweak core game mechanics to adapt to different genres or play styles). RQG design goals seem to be almost disdaining the idea of modern - it's an attempt to return to 1984 and this time do it right. All the influences discussed in the Design Notes, except maybe a bit of HQG, are from the 1980s or earlier, even RQ3 a little suspiciously new.
  9. I found a lot of Hero Wars material interested me, but didn't inspire me. Ideas where jelling, but not quite there yet. Some ideas I hated, like the adherence to three worlds theory, I much prefer the 'three different ways of perceiving the other world' idea. Some published material was too vague and low key - a lot of the cows and tula stuff came across as trying to do realist fiction in a system excels at epics and freewheeling fantasy. I take Jeff's point that KOPD shows that cow farming can work as a game element, but you can just as easily take the much greater success of KoDP as showing that farming and cows work better in a resource tracking simulation game than in a loose narrativist game. Other HW stuff had the opposite problem - huge epic scenarios, resolutely on tight rails. Scenarios for a narrativist game where you didn't have much role in the narrative. But S:KoH was when it all came together well. It took the best of the HW ideas, refocused, had scenarios that mostly worked with the system better. And actually made it feel like we could play in Sartar! Not some little corner of it, Sartar! There were some definite flaws still. The 'road encounters' section, so not really appropriate for a narrativist game to have a random wandering monsters table (but hey, it's a cool source of ideas), and particularly the radical idea that HQ2 creature descriptions are far too long and detail filled and anything that vaguely resembles a stat, even an abstract one (e.g. Weight) for any arbitrarily odd Glorantha creature that the reader be assumed to have no familiarity with at all, should be banished. But still, idiosyncrasies aside, big solid books of quality material. They got me back to regularly playing Glorantha again.
  10. I find some of the Mongoose books have some use. If it's a book written by a long time Glorantha fan, especially if Greg had some hand in it, and you also have the Guide and assume the Guide is always right where the two conflict, so you can still get a lot of use out of them. Often there will be a lot of info that is not otherwise discussed much anywhere. Maybe it's fanzine quality, but I have enjoyed a lot of fanzines too. And I'd hate to see the work put in just thrown out. I find some of them are pretty worthless, but it's not hard to tell which are which.
  11. Joerg, there was a Plundering of Aron convention game? I'd love to know more.
  12. Some MRQ products have much more information than any more canonical resource on a subject, and so can be very handy if you are looking for ideas, definitely better than nothing. Sometimes they have more information than any canonical resources, and its bad enough you should avoid it anyway, and it really isn't that much better than nothing. I would say their elf book, written by a long term Glorantha fan, is pretty good, for example. But all the steampunk stuff in the Clanking City should probably be ignored entirely if you want to remain anywhere near canon. Cults of Glorantha often has useful ideas that are better than nothing either when dealing with cults not given a long form writeup eisewhere or looking for heroquest ideas. They are certainly a better starting point than nothing if you want to run a Gloranthan Mythras game. Dara Happa Stirs is great, I'd probably change a few things but its epic and loads of fun and close enough to canon. Pavis is a bit less fun, but stil full of ideas. Anything Loz had a hand in, really, is worth getting even if a few bits might be flawed (Loz had terrible deadlines too). RQ Empires is a cool rule system that may or may not be any use for most RQ games in any era, but is fairly interesting and looks fun for what it does. Worth picking up for the ideas therein. That said, that is the edited highlights. the MRQ1 system isn't so good, and many of the books are pretty obviously quickly thrown together and of very poor quality.
  13. There essentially are very few sorcerers in Sartar, and it isn't part of the local culture. While Lhankor Mhy worshippers often use sorcery, they aren't thought of as professional sorcerers but as sages (if urban) or lawspeakers (if in a traditional clan). A specialist sorcerer would be unusual, and considered very suspect for their use of foreign magic (the Lunars employ sorcerers, but the Lunars are already suspect foreigners). If Sartarites had a sorcerer living among them for some reason, they'd probably be considered a weird form of sage. And yes, playing an average Lhankor Mhy studious scholar in a major temple is a bit dull. But your PC will be different. Either they will belong to a more interesting sub cult (the Wild Sages (p165) are useful for more traditional RPG campaigns), or you may be a Lawspeaker for the clan and often asked by the chief to investigate problems facing the clan, or they may a quiet scholar at the start of the game who then gets caught up in great events and forced out of the quiet seclusion by circumstances.
  14. I'm very keen to eventually develop Kralorela, and explore a lot of the details - I just think it is a way off being fully baked, and not the highest priority to develop the setting. I'd even rather see an East Isles book first that develops more orthodox mysticism a bit more before diving into the complexities of pseudo-draconic mysticism turned state religion (and an oceans and islands book would nicely tie into a Holy country setting).
  15. My next game is planned to be East Isles. And I love Pamaltela, especially the inland plains. But if you are asking me what area would I most like to buy a HeroQuest book about, it's somewhere in the West. I want official Glorantha to properly tackle the Malkioni and sorcery. Seshnela, Ralios, or Fronela would all do. Not that I'd complain about a Holy Country or Lunar book, but I'd prefer to stretch ourselves a bit more. I'm actually weirdly a bit reluctant about Kralorela. I think if we rushed a Kralorela book into production in the near future, it would probably end up being too obviously Chinese. We need a bit more time for Kralorela to percolate.