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JonL last won the day on April 12

JonL had the most liked content!

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About JonL

  • Rank
    Senior Member


  • RPG Biography
    Not all the way back, but pretty far.
  • Current games
    Starcraft using d6 Space
  • Location
    United States
  • Blurb
    I play in a group that sets Tolkien's song lyrics to string band music, The lonely Mountain String Band http://lmsb.me
  1. A Magical Economy

    I would expect any successful Orlanthi farming community to have access to at least one initiate of Barntar, Gustbran, and the local Grain Goddess. Otherwise they wouldn't be successful. At best, those without would be dependent on neighbors (hopefully clan-mates) for key services. At the clan-level, I expect single Gustbrani with some lay member apprentices might service an entire Tula if there are enough Barntari in the outlying steadings that know Repair. Similarly, one specialist healer might be enough for a whole clan if there are enough Barntari or Grain Goddess initiates (especially midwives) around to provide minor healings and such in the field. There aren't Rune Lords/Devotees under every rock, but I suspect that 1/100 is a lowball figure for cottars, vendref, Lodrili, etc. who initiate to the less martial and more professional cults know 2-3 key spells that support their daily livelihood.
  2. A Magical Economy

    There's always work to do on a farm, sure, but on many days during Fire, Storm, and Dark Seasons their chores will be done by lunchtime. Outside planting and harvest periods, those so inclined could certainly study the mysteries of Heal & Repair with senior members of the local Barntar cult.
  3. How to teach Glorantha?

    While written for HQ, the Satar Player's Primer is a solid choice for "Read This." Only about a page-an-a-half of it are system-specific material. The rest is all pure setting introduction.
  4. Glorantha: HQG or RQ Classic?

    ...says you can use one per exchange in Extended Contests and as many as you want on Simple Contests. ;-) HQG mirrors HQCR's language on p63, while stating the opposite in a clearly-not-a-typo fashion on p60. Like I said, either way makes for a fine game, and which way is better is largely a matter of taste. Just the same, a rule-book shouldn't leave you guessing about what the rules are, especially for newcomers. I'll spare everyone the utter threadjack that recapitulating my rants from last year in the croudsource editing thread would entail. Still, another year has gone by and I still don't know whether@Jeff meant the p60 verbiage to be a deliberate change between CR & G with the p63 text inheriting some unedited copy from CR or what; but it would still be greatly appreciated for things like that to be addressed properly, even if just in a separate note rather than correcting the PDF.
  5. My HeroQuest gaming aids

    Thanks in particular for compiling the Spot Rules Summary. For as much as part of the appeal of HQ is that you don't have to think about special rule cases very often, I have at times passed on using some of those in moments where they would have been beneficial to the game because I use them infrequently enough that the details weren't at my fingertips and I didn't want to break the flow of the game to look up something like the particular options of followers. Having a quick-reference like that handy with some sticky tabs on it would be very useful in those moments.
  6. Glorantha: HQG or RQ Classic?

    No single erratum is a game-breaker. They do however make for a different game depending on which way you decide to jump. In particular, can one spend a single Hero Point on a simple contest, or many? The book clearly states both a few pages apart. The game is totally playable either way, but the former case encourages using them here and there throughout the night, while the latter encourages hoarding them to throw at a climactic Nigh Impossible challenge. Neither approach is bad, but which case is true at your table has a large impact on just how nigh impossible Nigh Impossible is. (For myself, I prefer one per roll - such that Nigh Impossible retains some teeth, but allow spending one on an augment roll and one on the actual contest roll itself. I make an exception to that if I'm running a Super-Hero game, because surprise upsets & reversals are a key part of that genre.) The result-point allocation in extended contests in the stated rules vs in the Battle of Auroch Hills play example is another one. The game is playable either way, obviously the Auroch Hills example is an actual-play transcript and they managed to make it through their session just fine. Depending on which way you do it though, the way extended contests play out is different. Again, not unplayable in either approach, but the risk/reward dynamics around things like Risky Gambit, Phyrric Victory, and such are impacted by which way it's done - especially with uneven numbers of opponents. Nothing among the errata ruins the game, but they do make it harder to learn the game from the book, and especially to learn to run the game. While errata don't impede play once you've decided how to approach them, they do degrade the primary utility of the rule-book as a tool for learning how to play the game. Someone coming in cold doesn't have the context to understand the implications of the above and make informed choices about how they want their game to go. If the above were even presented as options with their impact on play explained, it would be alright. That's why I grind the axe about it, whenever it comes up. I <3 HQ and teach it to new players at every opportunity. The rule-book presenting the rules inconsistently makes that harder, and as can be seen right here sometimes makes potential new adopters shy away.
  7. Dolutha

    Restoring the flaming spear that protected the clan? Sounds like a job for an Elmali. Bonus points if the Grazers do show up and identify a Loyal Thane on horseback as riding with Yu-Kargzant/Jardan then team up to fight the ghouls.
  8. Troll wind Lord.

    O: Hey, how about that Yelm, a real jerk, am I right? K: For sure. I don't know how or why, but he just inexplicably showed up out of the blue in our old neighborhood and now it's all glowy and hurts and nobody can get any rest. O: Er, yeah, inexplicable. <cough> Still, somebody should really do something about that...
  9. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    That's an interesting take. I would think that much of that would be a fine non-stretch use of the parent keyword itself, though having the specialized breakout for it for someone who is in particular a sword geek would certainly be at an advantage in doing so, being both eligible for Just-the-Right-Tool-for-the-Job plot augment and having a more specific ability privileged over more general ones. A +4 is a lot to sink into such a thing that might not be applicable to all that many conflicts, but OTOH if you go old-school and have lots of whacky intelligent magic longswords loose in the game setting, perhaps it would come up quite a bit. From a mechanical effectiveness standpoint, I'd expect to frequently see excellence with a particular culture's a signature weapon(s) show up as a breakout under the race/culture keyword, and thus be usable as an augment for a fighting ability elsewhere on the sheet. Having touched on the stretch, specific>general, and Just-the-Right-Tool-for-the-Job concepts, I think that their application is crucial in capturing the feel of a class/race based game. If Prestidigitator Paul wants to fight using his "Magic-User" keyword, he's likely both Stretching and facing some disadvantages relating to armor disparity & such, unless he's got a "Deadly with a Staff" breakout and maybe a few other equalizers in play. Similarly, anybody can try to disarm a trap or pick a lock or whatever, but a Thief with appropriate abilities is going to be at a significant advantage in doing so. Despite some role-definition & niche protection being part of the emulated genre, I do like the idea that using "Hobbit" for stealth or "Wood Elf" for archery are as legit as using one's class ability for doing so.
  10. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    I'm psyched to hear that those and some of the other D101 back catalog are still available on DriveThru. I'd gone looking on the D101 site and assumed they were no longer available when they weren't in the store there. (I still <3 The Book of Glorious Joy, @Newt, even if it's out of setp with the current Western paradigm. If I were to run a HQ game based on Medieval romances, or allegorical adventure tales like The Faerie Queene, I would gladly lean on TBoGJ)
  11. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    This is similar to how Dungeon World expresses the same principle, and it works pretty well there too.
  12. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    @Andrew J. Luther, looking at the example characters you posted. I'm curious about some of the breakouts abilities. There frequently seem to be things like "Fight with Longsword & Shield" and "Longsword Specialist." under the same Keyword. While both thematic (especially retaining the 70's concept of what a "longsword" is about), that limits their usefulness in play since breakouts under the same ability can't augment one another. Could you elaborate on what you've got going on there? I assume there's more to it that I don't yet understand.
  13. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    AlignmentA character's Alignment ability represents not only a descriptor of morals/ethics, but also a gauge of the character's affinity and connection to the supernal energies emanating from the Outer Planes, powers and beings that embody them, . It will mostly be used as an augment for other abilities, but might on occasion be used directly for things like resisting Charm effects or other manipulation that are attempting to make you go against your Alignment, or perhaps even as a Flaw if being manipulated by someone clever enough to exploit your personality. Characters' susceptibility to "Detect..." or "Protection from..." spells are also effected by their alignment and its rating, particularly in the latter case. Characters with Alignment ratings of 1w or higher present Moderate Resistance to Detect Good/Evil/Law/etc magic or effects. Those with 10w or greater present Low resistance to those Detects. Characters with Alignments rated below 1w are not effected by Protection from Good/Evil/Law/etc magic. Those with extremely powerful Alignment grant a free bump-up to Protection from _____ spells effecting them for every mastery level past the first.It is even possible, though often quite difficult, to communicate with other creatures of your same Alignment solely via the common supernal affinity you share. This is more of an intuitive understanding of one another than a verbal one, and complex mundane concepts are difficult to express via "Alignment Language."
  14. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    For Clerics, I moved away from a standard spell list, as I always thought all Clerics having the same spells was a bit off. They get fewer miracles/day than the magic spell casters do, but can have a bit more flexability wrt "at will" effects. ClericsCharacters with "Cleric" or equivalent Character Class Ability/Keyword should do the following:Note two or three things your deity for particularly embodies or is "God of..."Note 3-5 feats, trappings, goals, or acts for which your deity is renowned.Note three taboos, geasa, vows which your faith forbids or must follow.The character may invoke their deity's power for miracles that are in line with the above description once per day for every four points the ability is above 9. That is to say:Cl Rating:miracles/day13:117:21w:35w:49w:513w:6etcAdditionally, they may do the following things without counting towards their daily miracle count: Turn/Command undead, heal "Hurt" level injuries or stabilize those with greater injuries, use divine blessings or guidance as an augment or assist, sense holy or unholy energies, resist certain supernatural attacks, inspire the faithful,and so on.Stretch penalties will be assessed if the Cleric has been or is violating the taboos of the faith, or if the action attempted is contrary to the deity's character. If the character's Alignment ability is a strong match for the faith, it can often be used as an augment for clerical magic, while an opposed Alignment may sometimes function as a Flaw.Non-Clerics with Divine FavorOther characters may follow or be blessed by a particular deity without having a Cleric Character Class Ability. If someone takes a "Follower of..." or similar ability for a given faith, they may not perform the outright miracles, healing, or turning that an actual Cleric can, but may still call upon their divine patron for augments, guidance, and protection. A "Paladin" or similar Character Class Ability also includes this capability, and may also take other Cleric-like abilities (such as Turning) as breakout abilities if desired.
  15. Dungeons & HeroQuest

    Here are some example Grimoires containing spells from the old AD&D lists, grouped by theme. They mostly have low-level spells with a few mid-level spells here and there. Over the course of a campaign, characters might discover or learn new/higher level spells within these the themes of their existing Grimoires, or perhaps obtain new and more rare/precious Grimoires containing deeper magics. A Prestidigitator's PrimerA classic reference tome collecting basic spells geared toward helping a journeyman magic-user survive the dangerous world outside his former master's protection.--Magic Missile--Shield--Light--Feather Fall--Protection from Evil--Shocking grasp--Mending--Jump--Scare--Locate Object--Web--Feign Death--Dispel magicEssences of of MotionA basic text on the application of magical power to force and movement.--Feather Fall--Jump--Push--Spider Climb--Run--Tenser's Floating Disc--Unseen Servant--Levitate--Shatter--Haste--Slow--Gust of Wind--FlyThe Fragile SelfA treatise on effecting the minds of others by the notorious seducer and manipulator, Gavarge.--Charm Person--Friends--Hold Person--Taunt--Message--Sleep--Forget--Scare--ESP--Tasha's Uncontrollable Hideous Laughter--SuggestionThe Burning HandThe first (and most common) of three volumes on pyromancy by the ancient archmage Xeross. Intended to be an introductory work. Xeross's later (and more rare) works, "The Ball of Flame" and "The Conflagrations," are said to reveal the deeper secrets of pyromancy.--Affect Normal Fires--Melt--Firewater--Burning Hands--Pyrotechnics--Flaming Sphere--Light--Flame Arrow--Stinking CloudThe Peerless BurglarA collection of spells for stealth and theft--Spider Climb--Fools Gold--Invisibility--Leomund's trap--Nystul's Magic Aura--Locate Object--Rope Trick--Alter Self--Knock--InfravisionOn the Malleability of the Three DimensionsAn examination of the magical principles that underlie distance, size, and space.--Message--Levitation--Enlarge--Shrink--Item--Rope Trick--Mirror Image--Deeppockets--Blink--Clairaudience--Clairvoyance