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M Helsdon

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Everything posted by M Helsdon

  1. Size comparison charts for Genertela and Pamaltela. Don't ask me which creature is which...
  2. One thing to bear in mind is that the modern Yelmalio cult is the amalgamation of several Little Sun cults, primarily in Saird, and local traditions vary from Sun Dome to Sun Dome; probably the traditions differ to a greater or lesser degree between temples. At some, Yelmalio and Orlanth are allies, others rivals, and others enemies. These cults aren't going to monolithic, there is no supreme high priest set over all the temples. Even within a single temple, there will be factions, and, people being people, variations in attitudes.
  3. Who's to say he was wearing his original body when he fell out of Time and into the Mirrorsea?
  4. The Brithini breed when commanded to do so so by their 'yellow' caste; the Vadeli 'yellow' caste has been extinct, hopefully, since the Gods War, so the Vadeli happily break caste laws and breed anyway.
  5. Sigh. Constant as in not at Venusian or Jovian pressures at 'ground level', but with variation sufficient for weather.
  6. I don't believe that air pressure in Glorantha works as per gas laws in our world. People can certainly breathe in the Sky World, and there's thousands of miles of atmosphere above the Middle World, so the pressure would be severe at sea level. Instead, air pressure is perhaps a constant. It probably gets colder, but not by much above the level of the mountain peaks.
  7. As Nick, notes, there will be shrines to Yelm in Sun Dome temples, probably at Vanntar and Boldhome, so associated with Yelmalio. Among the Grazelanders as Yu-Kargzant, but otherwise only in Yelmalio temples or perhaps small shrines in Tarsh and probably not with anything approaching a cult with any significant membership. And to a Dara Happan, the Yelmalions are barbarous hill-landers, little better than their savage Storm worshipping neighbours. If your player wishes to worship a Solar god in Dragon Pass, their options are probably limited to a Grazelander, a Yelmalion, or an exiled or hostage Dara Happan noble who hasn't been ransomed or has chosen not to go home, the latter being challenging, and they'd have to visit a Yelmalio temple to worship at its shrine.
  8. As I understand it, the talari have their ancestor cults, and the dronari and holari have their own cults, all tolerated so long as they do not threaten the order and stability of the caste system.
  9. Given that we don't know the details of Iron Dwarf alchemy, using elf to improve ur-metal seems entirely possible.
  10. At this stage it appears that the price of premium colour books will increase dramatically. Black-and-white and standard colour books will not be affected.
  11. Hu-metal is bronze, Umath’s metal. (The name is Ralian in origin - see https://wellofdaliath.chaosium.com/home/catalogue/websites/moondesign-com/jeffs-old-blogs/xeotam-dialogues/) Iron is ur-metal, created through alchemy by the dwarves.
  12. Many things. Iron is tough but can bend and break, and depending on its manufacture can be brittle. Ironbreaker suggests a superior steel sword, perhaps forged by Mostali.
  13. I believe my source was typed - will have to try to find it - but from the limited number of ancient texts I have access to, Greg's spellings were fairly variable, some doubtless intentionally. This sort of thing happens in real ancient texts all the time... Some still exist, as regional variants: Seshnegi Aerlit, Ralian Erulat, Dragon Pass Orlanth, all phonetically similar. ADDITIONAL: There are several versions of Arkat's upbringing in the RQ Kickstarter 'Dragon Pass and the Wilds'. There's a little more in the Sorcery and the West book. The former names his mother as Amilla (did I read this as Anila or was this another text or did I mistype?). On the previous page his unbreakable sword is called Deathson. There's also a fragment where Arkat and his two sons Talor and Gerlant, are crossing over the mountains after the final victory.
  14. There are details there I didn't know. In one version I have seen (don't ask me where - I can't remember - one of the RQ2 Kickstarter books?), his mother was named Anila (typo for Amilla?) who was one of the chaste Brithini warrior maidens named the Silver Shields, captured and seduced by a rough barbarian Orlanthi warlord who attacked Brithos, and for the shame of this, he and his mother lived in seclusion in the forests sheltered by the Aldryami until he came of age. These stories are, I believe, from very early treatments, and now serve to provide mythic doubt and uncertainty.
  15. I have seen one version of Arkat's Saga, and read in detail one segment that was published in a fanzine some years ago, starting "I hate trolls." I recognised another segment which is republished in the original TrollPak when Arkat becomes a troll. From skimming through that version, those are the main parts featuring Arkat. Most featured his friend, or dealt with other matters. Instead, other than those two pieces, you'll find more about Arkat scattered here: https://wellofdaliath.chaosium.com/home/gloranthan-documents/greg-sez/the-kings-of-seshnela-part-one/ But the most coherent source is The Guide to Glorantha. For some time I believed there was a Talor's Saga, and (happy to be wrong!) now believe it is barely a page, reproduced in one of the four Kickstarter reward books for the RuneQuest Kickstarter. It is basically Arkat and Talor riding up the Rockwoods to see the extent of Dorastor over the mountains, and is obviously no longer consistent with the chronology. Talor laughs when he sees the scale of the campaign before them... I believe there was other material in the Guide Kickstarter Origins of Glorantha volumes, but all I've seen of those is the Contents list. To turn a version of Arkat's Saga into a coherent book would be, I believe, a very great deal of work, because much of what you'd expect isn't there (perhaps it is in a document I haven't seen). My take, derived from these sources, and a few other things, appears in the JC non-canonical Men of the West, and I recount Arkat's story only as far as Slontos and then his retirement to Ralios. https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/325525/Men-of-the-West?src=hottest_filtered But for canon, the Guide...
  16. Non-canonical of course, 'written' thousands of years later... Some Orlanthi say Arkat's father was Humakt, the God of War, or a barbarian Humakti hero. This seems unlikely, for a half breed would not have been accepted as a horali cadet. The zzaburi tested all suspected of mixed parentage, destroying or expelling those adjudged impure. Despite being assessed several times, Arkat passed all the examinations posed. These legends also claim that Arkat possessed a powerful weapon belonging to his father which he freed from under a boulder before he left the island. It is called God-Cleaver in the legends, reputed to be the Unbreakable Sword of Humakt, fashioned of Adamantine, which is said to be formed of raw incarnate Law. It is improbable that a cadet would own or be permitted by the zzaburi to retain such a powerful weapon, and the Hero probably obtained it during the wars on the mainland. Instead, it may have been gained on one of the Hero’s many heroquests during the wars in Ralios. It is said that in his lifetime Arkat proved he was the son of Humakt, a pure horali, and all the other things legend claimed for his origins, impossible as that may seem, unless there was more than one Arkat... It is possible that some of the deeds ascribed to Arkat were performed by one or more of his Companions instead. https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/325525/Men-of-the-West?src=hottest_filtered And many many other things...
  17. M Helsdon

    Ancient West

    Obviously not canonical, but may be of interest: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/325525/Men-of-the-West
  18. Jeff recently posted about the Sun Dome of Sartar: ‘With a dome approximately 30 meters in diameter, the Sun Dome Temple stands some 45 meters high, making it larger than the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. It is comparable in size to the ziggurat of Ur or Pantheon of Rome.’ Now I’m not an architect or archaeologist, but I like to find how things work, and a dome of that size can only be built in a number of ways. The Dome of the Rock has a wooden frame and roof, covered in gilt, so the Sun Dome of Sartar could be constructed from wood. In Prax there’s limited access to timber, so what is the Sun Dome there made of? The Pantheon in Rome is made of Roman concrete, but has a fair bit of bracing, and wouldn’t be the right shape, a possibility, but would probably need dwarven sorcery. There is a very long tradition of domes in Mesopotamia, dating all the way back to Sumer. The Sumerians could construct arches of fired or dried mud brick and a dome is basically an arch rotated around its central vertical axis. Some reconstructions of ziggurats have a dome atop the shrine at the peak of the ziggurat, but none have survived, and so far as I know, the only pictorial evidence of early domes are in Assyrian reliefs showing small houses. However, the tradition of domes was carried to Iran and beyond, and there’s evidence of wooden and brick domes. At the Parthian capital at Nyssa (Turkmenistan) there was a hall with thick walls surrounding four columns in the centre probably topped with a wooden dome. During the Sassanid Empire (yes, I know, not Bronze Age), domes were erected on reception halls of palaces such as Sarvestan palace and Ardeshir palace (in Firuzabad). The domes of Sarvestan palace (also known as the Temple of Anahita) date to around 350AD and are the oldest brick domes in the world, the largest having a span of 12.80m, and height of 20m. The dome at the Ardeshir palace is larger with a span of 13.3m. A 'span' is the length of a structural component that 'spans' between two supports, so the Sun Dome dome in Sartar spans an impressive 30m. The double layered main dome over the Friday mosque of Qazvin is the biggest Seljuk dome with a span of 15.20m and height of 22m. Built around 807AD it’s well outside any thought of a Bronze Age dome (but Bronze Age in Glorantha doesn’t limit things like architecture or technology), but we don’t know how large the Sumerian domes could be. A surviving arch at the much later Assur has a span of several metres. Could they build larger arches? We don’t know. Where the enormous ziggurats have been rendered into ruined mounds of brick, ancient arches and domes would be long collapsed. It seems possible that a dome of fired brick would be feasible. Add in some Stasis magic and a dome with a span of 30 metres is possible.
  19. Small Lunar Provincial villa added to Temples & Towers. https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/297497/Temples--Towers?affiliate_id=2310005
  20. Probably a mixture of stone (for the foundations and the lower level of the ground level walls), and cob, rammed earth, or wattle and daub in wooden frames and then plastered with lime to improve waterproofing. Adobe is a term that can cover all these soil/clayed based mixtures, but also more precisely sun dried bricks of sandy earth mixed with water and straw or dung, which are fine in fairly arid regions but unsuitable anywhere with significant rainfall (you'd find buildings of adobe construction in Bronze and Iron Age southern Spain and Portugal, but not much further north in Europe, but you would find cob, rammed earth and wattle and daub buildings all the way to Scotland). This is perhaps a decent model, at least in construction, if not floor plan, for a Lunar villa in Sartar or Tarsh: http://www.butser.org.uk/villa.html
  21. Hey! That building (or its components) looks oddly familiar! 8-) I am considering adding a Lunar villa to Temples and Towers.
  22. The 'plus covers' was an early test file I didn't realise was visible; it has been deleted and should no longer appear.
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