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Joerg last won the day on September 20

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About Joerg

  • Rank
    Gloranthan studies
  • Birthday 01/03/1965

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  • RPG Biography
    Former president of Deutsche RuneQuest-Gesellschaft aka Chaos Society, Glorantha know-it-all (almost), some mentions in Glorantha publications
  • Current games
    Occasional HQG, RQ and Cthulhu
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    Into rpgs since1984, into world building since the 70ies, into RQ since 1989, active on RQ-Daily and successors since 1993
  1. A Drunken RuneQuest

    ... I should have said I found no match, not that there was none.
  2. A Drunken RuneQuest

    I checked most of the Hero Wars and HQ1 era books for such a rune, but there was no match. The closest fit were the Pella rune lacking the dot in the center (Thunder Rebels p.191) and the Oakfed rune wich has a V with a dot in the center, and handles to the side (Heroquest 1, p.147). My best bet would be one of the husband deities listed in the First Fire Day box (Thunder Rebels p.190). The U-shaped runes crop up with lesser Heortling deities. A dot in the middle usually signifies some fire connection.
  3. Glorantha: HQG or RQ Classic?

    Since there is no official tournament gaming, and since each campaign will have its own pacing and scale, the rules of HeroQuest in whichever incarnation are mostly a social contract of the gaming group. These rules/suggestions may be a defining trait of HQG, but this doesn't mean that they have to define your games of HeroQuest in Glorantha. There are different styles of narration and of cooperative gaming that use this rules set, but with their own conventions and methods, using different platforms (face-to-face in campaigns, convention one-offs, by hangout (or other such internet methods) or by forum, wiki or mailing list.
  4. Deities of Beer and Wine

    That's how Glorantha works though. Everything has a myth/god/spirit/sorcery-based explanation, not a science-based one. Plants grow because of myth and magic, not because they're just following natural processes. e.g. if you get ill, it's not because of some natural effect like a virus, it's because of a spirit or curse or similar. Often enough the magic and the myth is in the being, IMO. The world of Glorantha is permeated by spirits, by essences, and by divinity. That's different from our world. These presences can be expressed as runes, although those runic descriptions usually are only a partial description. We have seen several philosophies of atomic Glorantha - the Three Worlds Model for instance described everything in terms of divine, spirit and essence components. We have seen the suggestion that everything can be broken down into core runes. I can accept something like that, although in my perception of submicroscopic composition of matter these runes would be subatomic particles rather than the equivalent of chemical elements or isotopes. Matter has realized expressions (liquid water), but also has potential expressions (steam, ice, air humidity, surface-adhesive water) that also are inside the runic composition. Sea water also has all the food taken from the land, all the diffuse and concrete life (cyanobacteria, microalgae or luminous bacteria surely are a thing in Glorantha, observable in collectives, which may be described as spirits, as matter, as divine influence), dissolved salts and minerals, suspended soil particles. Not to mention observable life - borderline visible organisms, the stuff filtered by numerous organisms like shells, sea anemones, sponges, worms, up to swarms of herring or baleen whales. According to Orlanthi, Pelorians or Lunars, each person is made up from 5, 6 or 7 souls. The Orlanthi make these the five elemental souls, suggesting that a single rune suffices to describe this soul. That would be an oversimplification on the scale of God Learner mistakes when approaching a local deity through runic analysis rather than through its myths, interconnections and dependences on other deities. The Malkioni have a concept of a magical energy inhabiting a person, but one that dissipates upon death, except for a number of Hrestoli (and presumably als a number of Henotheist) sects who believe in reincarnation (like the Galvosti, the only sect explicitely stated to have this belief in the Guide). Nothing about elemental souls, beast or other parts. Various mystical practices untie the mystic's identity from the entanglements of the world. That might alter their runic affiliations. Anyway, how does a change in runic affiliations affect the runic make-up of one's body and/or soul?
  5. p.311 - the Miringite Cave in the Darsen Hills as Dawn exit from the 4th and 5th Underworlds. The Theyalans have their own deities appear at the Gates of Dawn. Are there other such Underworld exits elsewhere? (5th Underworld is really deep...)
  6. Considering that he is looking upon the pleasant side of the statue, either he is into philosophical musings, or else he is copping a look beyond aesthetic admiration.
  7. I am more concerned with the definition of Carmania when I read that Carmania proclaims its independence - does it include the Oronin satrapy, or at least the western parts thereof? I take it that the Charg eruption didn't meet much of imperial troop resistance, basically making it as devastating as Greymane's great raids, or worse if some of those bull people managed to take some of the keeps or cities in the south. Aiming for the aid of the Arrolian territories indicates that the new Shah of Carmania still is a Lunar shah. I wonder whether it is Spol or Jhor which leads the new Carmania (or maybe the Eel-Ariash of the Oronin heartland satrapy, also liberating significant parts of Doblian?). Worion will have suffered most from the Charg outbreak, and the satrap of Bindle has shown to be a defensive player rather than an expansionist. WIll the new Carmania invoke the Lion Shahs or will it use the Bull Shahs in order to gain the support of Charg?
  8. Glorantha: HQG or RQ Classic?

    If you want to let your players' characters traipse through the wilderness, caves or musty ruins, fighting off encounters and inhabitants old-school style, RQ2 is a good system to use. It has some old-school traits that are endearing only through nostalgia, but every instance of old-school rpgs will have such. Until the kickstarter pdfs/reprints are available, you should use the Cults Compendium and one of the three RQ Classics campaign pdfs, and have a go. The resistance table is laughably simple to compute in your head. Equal values for active and reactive ability score will have a 50% chance at succeeding, every point the active skill is better will raise the chance by 5%-points, every point worse will lower it by that amount. In the case of extreme differences, a 1% chance for success or failure can be applied. Raising the difficulties is an advice, as are pass-fail cycles. Failing forward is more important than these technicalities, and the players should feel challenged on their path through the narration. HQG has ready-to play campaigns in Sartar-Kingdom of Heroes and The Eleven Lights (with the required companion volume The Coming Storm). If you say "hierarchical" rather than "feudal", you'll be right at home e.g. in Esrolia, in the West, or in Peloria. Dragon Pass Orlanthi and Praxians won't be able to give you this. Sun Domers on the other hand are perfect, and you could use the RQ3 Sun County book for the setting, and then go on to either Borderlands or Pavis, using the Gloranthan Classics - regardless which game system you will be using. Copies of that book should be available online. In case of doubt I have a shrink-wrapped spare one I could part with.The problem with this is that you have to do much of the setting preparation yourself if you play away from Prax/Dragon Pass. Esrolia is comparatively easy, as Harald Smith has done quite a bit of background preparation for his play-by-forum Nochet HQG game over on RPGGeek. House membership and your position in the House are pretty similar to a feudal system in terms of rank. Caste systems are the norm in Malkioni lands. Different name, very similar effect. There is little directly gameable material available for this culture, and none exactly for the two systems you consider. The eastern cultures of Kralorela and Vormain have similarly layered societies, but apart from the out-of-print RQ3 Land of Ninja campaign (which could be played in Vormain) no gameable material has been published. Fonrit with its layers of slavery has seen some gameable material distributed over convention fund raisers. Not feudal (unless your definition of feudal includes an extremely dystopian interpretation of the feudal system), but again with clear hierarchies, and magic to ensure obedience and compliance. The Lunar Empire has a layered society following the Dara Happan model. Not feudal in the normal sense of the word, either, but certainly hierarchical. Teshnos and Maslo might qualify, too. Both have caste systems different from the Western one. The Guide offers quite extensive gazetteers for all of these settings, but leaves the local details to be worked out by the narrator (and possibly input by the players).
  9. Deities of Beer and Wine

    So fermentation is a special case of naturally occurring magical transformation. As is life in general. Fermentation isn't limited to alcohol. I specifically mentioned baking bread or aging fish or bird meat in air-tight vessels. It is also about production of vinegar, curd, cheeses, yogurts, kefir.... These household magics/processes have things in common. Whether yeast doughs or sourdough, you improve your bread by adding some purposefully left-over seed material from the previous run. In case of yeast breads, you can use the leftover of the mash after separating off the beer as an alternative. Nope. That's how you get the juice, aka the must (for white wines) or just the pulp. Must is a delightful beverage already before fermentation. Stomping doesn't help with producing cider, either. Stomping with your feet won't give you the juice, you need a mill- or quern-like crushing device. An oil mill will do. Good luck with that. In order to brew a beer, you have to malt, to kindle the life hiding in the grain before initiating the mash. Every brewer will tell you so. Afterwards, you have to heat the mash before putting it into cool, underground or at least roofed (i.e. dark) storages. Malt is a welcome source of sweetness, too. Brewers and distillers stop the malting process by roasting the grain before starting the mash. Stuff has to be sweet before it can be made intoxicating. In this case, I dearly ask you not to omit tangible real life mysteries in the production of these beverages. You're losing out with your "stomping dance" travesty - when I read your suggestion of "it's about the dance", I had all kinds of unfortunate visual associations, like the Lucy episode with Lucille Ball at the vinery, or the cut scene from the Pink Panther series used in the posthumous (pertaining to Peter Sellers) hunt for inspectore Clouseau. It's not a dance. Plowing a field is more of a dance than pulping grapes. Sowing a field is more of a dance. You get a much better myth out of Eurmal maliciously pulping the berry harvest, and subsequent treatment of the housewife producing the beverage. So, fermentation is a commonly known sorcery/alchemy with a bit of animism. (Something you know, with a bit of something you have - the seed to start or accelerate the fermentation.) Deities may be able to give blessings in addition to the correct procedure, or aid maintaining the correct procedure. Disease is associated with darkness and spirits. So why would fermentation attempts gone off not be associated with such? Bad goings on in the town may have drawn their attention, or neglectful treatment of earth's bounty. If nothing else, dark earth spirits. Similar to the modern world superstitions about menstruating women and whipping cream (whether with an electric mixer or some hand-stirring kitchen tool). Fermentation is a Fertility in Darkness transformation, often underground. Cellars, caves, huge Amphorae dug into the ground (I've seen these in a documentation on (caucasus) Georgian vineries). It isn't the warmth of the womb but the underground chill. Fermentation aids are well known to any agricultural society. You get curd for cheese only if you store the milk in calf stomachs, or use the liquid you can extract from calf/lamb/kid stomachs e.g. with whey: the rennet. Any pastoralist culture will know this, and have myths explaining the necessity, unless heavily christianized or similarly alienated from their ancient myths. And even then it will have superstitions about it. E.g. how a bull calf is preferable (when the real cause is simple herd economy). Sure, your average, city-bred gamer will be ignorant of such processes. (At least of the production of dairy - I find that gamers are fairly well informed on the processes of brewing beer and spirits.)

    Nice. Air pressure/density might alter the altitude steps of the temperature somewhat, but that can be neglected for game purposes, and planets whose organisms use other liquids than water for their cells, resulting in different freezing or boiling points. Latitude is a factor, too, but one should assume that a landing team will choose a location where either the crew or the natives will suffer least. Whether the planet is so hot that only the arctic zones are habitable (maybe only in winter), or whether it is so cold that you get tundra at the equator, some common sense should be assumed. Unless PCs are at the helm.
  11. Deities of Beer and Wine

    I would think so. There are several types of rice in the Pelorian bowl, and several types of rice in Kralorela, Teshnos and Vormain. Some types may be common to both regions, others will be local variations unknown elsewhere. The Artmali or their Loper allies may have been rice farmers, too - on Melib, in the old capital Mellon, Annilla is among other functions the goddess of rice. No rice mother is given for Fonrit. According to Glorious ReAscent of Yelm, Murharzarm introduced irrigation to Dara Happa. Rice farming may have been possible without irrigation in natural wetlands or in regularly flooded basins, and I suppose that Greg meant to include the Wild Rice farming or at least harvesting done by the native Americans of the rivers in the agricultural methods of Peloria. In Teshnos, Calyz tamed the Tesho marsh and converted it into rice growing land, but the cult of Solf sponsors the rice festival in Taksatar - pretty clear what his role is in this business, at least as the consumer. In Kralorela, both Emperor Shavaya and a son of Aptanace the Sage are credited with irrigation and rice paddies. Public drunkenness probably is an offense in Kralorela, and there is no mention of alcoholic beverages in either the culture section or the regional description of Kralorela. Wine is listed as one of the imports, though. Nothing indicates the presence or absence of rice wine or other booze in Vormain.
  12. Gloranthan themed birthday party.

    Sounds good. In case of doubt, offer magical tokens for these abilities, and make them (or rather their "bases") fit together like a jigsaw puzzle to get the final clue, and add an item/ability card. That way, you can re-distribute these in cases of non-attendance or drop-outs without having to re-write the character sheets. Laminated sheets on a key ring will do for holding the character "sheet" together. (Speaking from personal experience here - in Griffin Mountain or Bust my giant character was supposed to have a rune item, but had not received that item card, causing some confusion on my part and other players when I repeatedly was accosted of having said item. It wasn't part of my character sheet's goals list, either.) You could have them fight giants (adult NPCs) wielding tree trunks (those 6 foot foam swimming aids) with soft swords, thrown soft balls etc. too. I wonder whether a station with balloons and mandatory prickly "armor" or slippers on the feet could be realized as a test for sneaking. (Rather than a hardly elevated balance bar with swinging sacks, which might frighten some participants.) Provide safety goggles - ideally with gruesome to look at full face masks and some cloth protection for the upper body attached - for the undead group, too. And hope for a calm day, or make this an indoor (or tent) event. We stopped using battle magic spells (sheets of paper with the spell name and effect on them) that would be crumbled up and tossed at opposing trolls in life action trollball. We had games where the wind was too strong to hit except when directly delivered.
  13. The Black Widow aspect of Sorana Tor came to the full only in the Illaro dynasty that followed Arim's Twin Dynasty. Earth worship in Tarsh had always had a good bit of the Dark Side of the earth to it - Shaker's Temple is ancient, from Vingkotling times or earlier. (Though probably rebuilt a couple of times...) Courting any goddess has its dangers, often mortal ones. That's part of what makes the mortal men courting them heroes. Kero Fin has always been a mother goddess - four of her children are better known, Orlanth, Yinkin, Quivin, and Inora. Tara/Velhara, the Lady of the Wild, may be a daughter or an aspect of Kero Fin, just like Sorana Tor. It was winning her affection (symbolized by bearing her necklace) that put Aram ya Udram on the First Council rather than the high king of the Heortlings. Aram having been a civilized diplomat besides an accomplished warrior and tamer of demons may have played a role in this, too, but also in winning her affection. Sacrifices aren't really unusual for leaders to perform, though usually on animals rather than sentients. Most leaders fulfill a religious function that causes them to cut throats, hew of heads or stab hearts, possibly cutting them out before. Priests may do this more often, but leaders will lead sacrifices at times. As a native speaker of German, the terms "victim" and "sacrifice" are pretty much synonymous for me ("Opfer"), so it may have taken me some more acclimatisation with the mindset to "offer" (linguistically the same as Opfer) lives to the powers of the Other Side. (Note another interesting linguistic construct, to "give up" something - passing it on to the elevated Other Side.) So, human sacrifice. Few human cults in Glorantha do this out of the blue. In many cases, the sacrifices volunteer for this. In other cases, victims ("overcome ones") are foes captured to go this way. Often this was a weird sort of honoring the enemy, too - you didn't pass on just anyone, the nobler the better. A sacrifice might evade the trip to the Court of Silence, and move directly to the afterlife of the receiving deity. They shouldn't be available for resurrection via the normal means. (Raiding the deity in question on the Other Side might be a viable method, but you'd have to be a demigod to pull something like that off.) Anyway, I am fairly certain that Arim knew about the man-eating side of Sorana Tor. That did not deter him in the slightest - it may have increased her allure.
  14. I've been wondering about the domination of the southern Genertelan navies by the trireme design for quite a while. My go-to source used to be FGU's Bireme and Galley wargame and rpg supplement which included deck plans, campaign rules for re-building lost vessels, ramming maneuvers etc. The bireme with two rows of oar banks was an easier and more seaworthy design than the trireme, and dominated the Roman navy as well as the period of colonization of the mediterranean prior to Athens' dominance. It is the logical step up from the penteconter or hectaconter monoreme design and is assumed to require less training than the trireme. All of these designs have a single rower per oar. The pentaremes of the punic war are assumed to have had two decks of two rowers per oar and the lower deck with a single rower per oar, although designs with just two or even only one deck are possible. Triremes are used by the Quinpolic league, the Handrans, the Kethaelans (Nochet, Rightarm Isles, Karse/Heortland), and by the Teshnans. All other naval forces appear to use monoremes with 25 to 50 rowers per side. I am fairly sure that the original design of Dormal's ship resembled a merchant vessel rather than a war vessel. The crew members we know are sailor heroes rather than great fighters (which defined the crew of the Argo). The Empire of the Middle Sea started out with smaller ships for the Battle of Tanian's Victory, and terrorized Kethaela with its bronze-scale clad, fire-spewing turtle galleys (which have their historical precedent with the 16th century Korean turtle-ships). In Kralorela they encountered the mammoth war barges, which any megalomaniac ruler would have wanted to copy for their own aggrandizement, which may have led to the leviathans mentioned as protective force for the Svagad Fleet (Middle Sea Empire p.25). Svagad's original fleet consisted of gilded galleys (p.20) protected by friendly naiads and bound sylphs and undines. I wonder why the trireme emerged as the pinnacle of Genertelan naval doctrine after the Closing. Starting with biremes would ha ve been logical, unless the shipbuilders of Karse and maybe Nochet maintained the art of building and crewing triremes. How many patrol craft would the Mirrorsea Bay have needed before the Opening? Maybe a dozen? The Hendriki kings appear to have had access at least to a sizeable armada of transports in order to get to Rhigos and other places in the initial stage of the Adjustment Wars. While the route north of Shadow Plateau still was open, the history of their conquest suggests that they landed in southern Esrolia and expanded from there. Afterwards, mutual distrust may have prompted both the Esrolians and the Hendriki to maintain a patrol fleet able to intercept troop transports, but with the arrival of Belintar, the necessity of this must have dropped. It isn't entirely clear how much effort their Pelaskite rowers and helmsmen will have spent chasing their kin from the opposite shore of the bay, either. With the Opening, the necessity returned, and the Holy Country had a head start building vessels to project power. They didn't have enough training, though, as their initial clash with the pirates showed. I guess the pirates used less ambitious monoreme vessels, like the Wolf Pirate ones in the Guide. Teshnan navy: Contrary to the statement under Military on p.426 on p.439 we read under Tumasikit: I am convinced that at least about a quarter of the Holy Country triremes were absent from the 1616 battle against the Wolf Pirates. Dosakayo is a major Kethaelan naval or at least re-supply base protecting the Teshnan trade from Marazi and other raids and performing mercenary convoy duty for ships sailing past the Sofali Isles.
  15. Prince of Sartar. Comic

    There is also an association of violet eyes with lefthandedness, which also featured in a story by Greg about either Obduran or Orlaront, or possibly both. I couldn't find the reference, though.