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JonL

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JonL last won the day on February 7

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About JonL

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  • Birthday October 23

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    St. Louis, Missouri - USA

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    Not all the way back, but pretty far.
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    Star Wars using Warbirds.
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    United States
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    I play in a group that sets Tolkien's song lyrics to string band music, The lonely Mountain String Band http://lmsb.me

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  1. JonL

    Better Battles

    Forgot to confirm earlier: yes, this is correct.
  2. JonL

    Better Battles

    With battles small enough for tokens to represent individual echilles or other units this can be meaningful. The first way is if a unit gets wiped out during a melee phase, their corresponding token is removed. The other way is narrative. It can be meaningful in the overall story context to know which troops in particular were defeated or routed. Did Lord A lose most of his knights while his rival Lord B lost only a few? Did a particular captain lose face or favor when his forces routed? Story can emerge from the details. There are rules for follower survival in the Book of Battle. The quick numbers in the KAP is more meant for a whole-battle situation. If you're taking 50% losses per battle round every time you succeed, you're going to dwindle to almost nothing in short order. You could do something similar if the follower survival rules in BoB are too cumbersome for your taste, but be sure to calibrate the numbers to the battle-round level rather than the whole engagement. Glad to hear it.
  3. JonL

    Better Battles

    It does seem to have suffered through some rough format conversions. I'll see if I have a cleaner copy. Good question. I would only apply the Disordered penalty to rolls made during the melee phase of the battle round, not to the Unit commander's Battle roll.
  4. JonL

    Running Fading Suns with HeroQuest

    To expand on the above, "How many keywords do you get?" is a significant balance question if you're using package keywords, or only allow access to certain things via taking specific setting-relevant keywords. If you're using umbrella-style keywords it's less important, and if you take the next step and let any ability become a keyword if you feel like hanging a breakout from it, it becomes a non-issue. WRT Fading Suns in particular, I would do something like this Monster High setup I put together a couple years back. Give players a few structured choices that help set up their connections to the setting and one another, as well as their positions within both their own factions and noble society more broadly. I would also use some of these expanded Flaw ideas for things like Urge & Hubris, and possibly for and social/political challenges.
  5. JonL

    Do you note player's rolled level in contest?

    I make a point to take the rolled results into account when narrating the aggregate result. I make a Crit vs Crit marginal look like an epic clash where one just barely edges out the other, while a Fail vs Fail marginal will be more of a chaotic clusterfuck (can re say fuck on here?) where the winner lucks into victory by screwing up less badly.
  6. It seems like lots of different bad things can happen due to the Closing, not just sinking outright. In any case, I think that some combination of the Giants, Zola Fel, Pinchenning, and the nymph below decks could between them work a one-off for the Cradle without unravelling the Closing altogether. That's not to say your theory is utterly baseless, but I find it much less cut and dried than you suggest. I think that Dormal's journeys, the Cradle launch, Harrek's great voyage, and probably some other seemingly unrelated things all helped make the Shiprise possible.
  7. A single arc minute is also very low definition. Legibility of text drops off below 18 arc minutes, and more basic symbols detail falls off below 16. That's perhaps less relevant to the Closing, but meaningful for spotting distances generally. For example, a 5m high emblem on a sail or large flag will have details visible at around a kilometer, and basic shape and contrast at about double that. Context might still let you reasonably infer more information from less detail, such as in cases where only a certain group used big red circle designs, or similar.
  8. I bet there's a proper Thanatar temple in Tinaros.
  9. JonL

    Ernalda to Vinga

    I also dont think they'd characterize Barntar-ish interactions with the land to be feminine, what with all the plowing, planting seeds, and so on.
  10. Their ongoing practices may or may not be helping Dormal buoy the Boat Planet and keep the seas open for all, but you can bet they believe it to be so. That sort of sorcerous-veneration-nearly-indistinguishable-from-theism is also straight out of Belintar's playbook.
  11. Shargash and Sedenya round out the ten city-suns.
  12. As I understand it, the Opening ritual is itself sorcerous (Combine Water and Trade, I expect). It's something you know, and while Dormal's cult teaches it to members, people with no particular devotion to Dormal can learn it. As Dormal shared it with the Vadeli, it became something anyone willing to risk dealing with them could gain access to, for a price. And so on from there. I imagine Dormal's cult has other seafaring magics as well though, that are less widely shared. The cult itself is only semi-theistic. The Pavis and Flintnail cults are a good comparison. Orthodox Rokari may make a show of castigating excessive devotion to an Ascended Master ("Whatever his father's pretensions, Dormal was clearly a mortal."), but they like their sea traffic and so have every reason to not ask for a translation of those Esrolian prayers incantations or look too closely at "veneration" practices that happen out past the horizon.
  13. My totally off-the-cuff impressions and wild-assed guesses: Pilots, navigators, and chaplains are all likely to be Dormal initiates, possibly captains depending on their background. I would expect organized fleets with institutional support like those of the Quinipolc League to have more. Most (non-Vadeli) sailors are lay members. Among the Vadeli, I expect more of them know the rites, as they care nothing for Dormal and the sanctity of cult secrets. Opening is just another useful tool to exploit. I would expect that an Opening lasts for a single crossing of open water. Either that or until you enter littoral waters that were accessible despite the Closing. Put into a port, approach a shoreline, move into an esutary, harbor, inland waters, etc. - the seas Close behind you.
  14. Meanwhile, over in Ralios, the tale was told that Storm King and the Sun King vie for the hand of the Great Green Lady, but the Bad Emperor is Malkion. I have some thought that in assembling/discovering the full Lightbringer's Quest, Harmast Barefoot mixed elements from the Broken Council's syncretic "Great Compromise to Defeat Chaos" version, an earlier "Orlanth goes to the Underworld to recover Ernalda" "Lifebringer" version, and the Ralian "Green Lady sends Erulat to the Underworld to recover Ehilm." version and exploited the Ehlim ≈ Yelm ≈ Bad Emperor ≈ Malkion confusion to bring back his Malkioni hero to defeat Chaos.
  15. I don't think Ian is suggesting that there was never a Yelm prior to the Bright Empire, but rather that Yelm as known in post-Bright Empire Glorantha is the product of a bit of deliberate ret-conning and amalgamation on the part of the Dara Happans to cement their then-current dynasty's Imperial Cult as the restoration of Yelm's Golden Age empire, papering over and partially subsuming the Antirius and Kargzant solar eras as well as the many city-state specific sun gods along the way.
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