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M Helsdon

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M Helsdon last won the day on May 21

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About M Helsdon

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    Senior Member


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    RQ2, AD&D
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    Proofreader.... on Guide to Glorantha, King of Sartar, HeoQuest: Glorantha. Contributor to The Coming Storm. Etc.

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  1. M Helsdon

    Is barding a thing in Glorantha?

    Horn and hooves were historically used as armour. However, such barding would be used by a small contingent of shock heavy cavalry after the enemy have been successfully disrupted by the mass of horse archers. There's the problem that many nomads in Pent (and some in Prax) don't have access to riding animals sufficiently strong to carry an armoured rider and wear armour themselves. Barding and similar protection significantly reduces the mobility and range of heavy cavalry.
  2. M Helsdon

    Three New Stars, Three New Gods?

    It would be inhumane to use ducks as armour plating for a chariot.
  3. M Helsdon

    Three New Stars, Three New Gods?

    Just be warmed, that a common outcome was the chariot turning in the face of the enemy and racing back to disrupt their own ranks.
  4. M Helsdon

    Three New Stars, Three New Gods?

    Until the animals pulling it are hit, die, and plunge to the ground taking the chariot car with them...
  5. M Helsdon

    Three New Stars, Three New Gods?

    Not really: they are a bigger target than someone flying by themselves or on a mount... About the only advantage they'd have would be the capability to carry more quivers of javelins.
  6. M Helsdon

    Three New Stars, Three New Gods?

    Based on material and illustrations in RQ:G war chariots are still a thing, though primarily as battle taxis and transport for religious regalia. The Lunars still use war chariots (based on material in the Glorantha Sourcebook) and have the few working Dara Happan artillery chariots. But then it is difficult for a high ranking officer (especially if Dara Happan) to ride a horse in their long tunic which reaches below the knee, and so riding in a chariot is much more dignified (until it breaks down - there's a dire need for spare wheels to be carried by the supply train). Massed chariot warfare is probably a thing of the past, as they need relatively flat terrain and a lack of cavalry. In our world, the battle chariot ceased to be militarily effective when cavalry and infantry skirmishers armed with barbed arrows and javelins appeared in great numbers, though continued to be present as a sort of prestige weapon platform for some time. The Persians and Successors armed them with scythes but they were rarely effective.
  7. M Helsdon

    Is barding a thing in Glorantha?

    And checking the original art direction, you are correct....
  8. M Helsdon

    The Interior Art Needs to Change

    Ah, but a live action series called the Prince of Sartar would be incredible (so long as it was done by a company like HBO). You liked the dragons in GoT? PoS has dragons miles long. You want plot, warfare, intrigue? You want nudity? Jar-eel...
  9. M Helsdon

    Is barding a thing in Glorantha?

    Um, the published text is different from the art direction text. I know, because I rewrote many of them for Jeff. Unfortunately, for my rewrites, I didn't see the actual artwork. I don't recall if I saw the art direction text for this one. Sadly, it's my view that the composition of this piece is not up to Jan's usual standard: it has two 'problems': the horse and rider; the way in which the palanquin is being carried (or not being carried). I'm a fan of Jan's work, but that doesn't mean that I can't question one particular piece...
  10. M Helsdon

    Is barding a thing in Glorantha?

    I'm not convinced.
  11. M Helsdon

    Is barding a thing in Glorantha?

    That's the West (and sadly that horse is far too small to carry the armour, or that rider - one of Jan's rare misfires) and horse armour there was duly noted. My reply referred to central Genertela.
  12. M Helsdon

    Is barding a thing in Glorantha?

    Barding for horses goes way back into the Bronze Age, when chariot horses were often provided with basic armour, often padded linen or scale (usually leather, sometimes bronze). If the animals pulling a chariot are incapacitated, your expensive weapon platform is rendered unserviceable; often barbed arrows and javelins were used against the horses, causing if not immediate death, then gradual blood loss, so even if only one of the team were injured, the capabilities of the chariot would rapidly degrade. In response to this, the animals were provided with their own armour, with the cost of increasing their load and reducing their mobility and range. In Glorantha, the chariots of the Sons of the Sun seem to have followed the same path, with a level of armour attempted never apparent in our history, until the chariots became slow cumbersome battle wagons and were no longer militarily useful. The chariots used by the Lunars lack that level of protection, but based on the reliefs from the palace in Boldhome, do have some protection (note also the protection about the necks of the lunar cavalry horses, which isn't just decorative or to keep the horse's head low to give the archer a better shot - this is probably based on the 'pompoms' used by the Assyrians for this purpose, and the peytral about the chest of a retreating horse in the upper panel, which may be barding). Similarly, an Esrolian relief that depicts Elmal as the Sun Stallion, shows him wearing head protection (horses are very vulnerable to blows to the top of the head). Horse armour is present in the West, and to a lesser degree in central Genertela, where at least one canonical illustration shows a horse with protection: The horse-zebra is protected on the chest with a woolen and felt peytral, decorated with a Man Rune signifying the cult of Pavis. Rows of woolen tassels offer some protection. [And yes, I have been very carefully studying canonical illustrations, because the details therein are rarely accidental.]
  13. M Helsdon

    About slavery

    I believe it appeared in a Hittite or Neo Hittite law code, but was pretty much standard for the time. The past is often a very foreign country.
  14. M Helsdon

    Mini Scenario

    A mini scenario that sits between the second and third scenario of the GM's Pack, with a tie-in to another product... War in Winter.pdf
  15. M Helsdon

    About slavery

    In the Near East, the problem of difficult slaves taken in war had a nasty solution: blinding. This reduced their value but rendered them more tractable; they could still be used to labor at grindstones or to lift water from wells. (Bronze Age and Iron Age life was often unpleasant - it wasn't just the Assyrians who did this.)