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Unferth

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  1. This question came up on rpg.net as well - https://forum.rpg.net/index.php?threads/runequest-glorantha-quickstart-questions.831589/. From my comment there (which is not purely in favor of it being a clear rules call!): Well...for one interpretation, the "Common Rune Magic" block on P. 317 says: It also lists Summon Cult Spirit as a common Rune spell.Summon Cult Spirit, in turn, says: From this, one reading is that Summon Elemental can be cast with any rune of the cult that granted it, as common Rune magic. The same logic would apply to other cult spirits - an Orlanth cultist could, if the identification of Summon Cult Spirit as common Rune magic is correct, summon an Air elemental using their Movement rune rather than their Air rune if they preferred. On the one hand, this doesn't fit very well with Gloranthan metaphysics - the power runes don't have anything in particular to do with elementals. On the other, the alternative is that the example character is wrong, and that the list of common Rune magic is wrong.Contrary indications are that the summoning spells are called out as "Special Rune Magic" in the cult writeups, and that Summon Elemental just says "the rune depends on the elemental being summoned" rather than listing the Magic rune. Although circling back to arguments for allowing it, Summon Elemental never actually says it always matches the specific element - it seems at least arguable given the example to assume "the granting cult's only elemental rune" rather than always "the rune for the summoned elemental".
  2. There's a Quickstart ruleset and basic adventure available as a free PDF here: https://www.chaosium.com/content/FreePDFs/RuneQuest/CHA4027 - RuneQuest Quickstart.pdf It's not the full system - in particular it lacks character creation and full magic rules. But it might let you get more of a sense for what the full system looks like before deciding whether to purchase or not.
  3. 13G focuses on combative Sartarites and on trolls. As you say, the classes mostly correspond to cults, though someone knowledgable could rework their flavor a bit. And some are more specific than others. As written, Orlanth gets several classes. There's a class just for Humakti. Storm Bull berserkers and Zorak Zorani share a class with some cult-specific traits for each, and there's a Trickster class. There's an Earth Priestess class for Ernalda worshippers, and a Hell Mother class for priestesses of Kygor Litor. Also a generic troll warrior class that could work for a follower of any of the troll gods, and the generic Orlanthi warrior class could be fine for (eg) an Elmal follower. There's nothing non-generic for the more peaceful Lightbringers - no Lhankor Mhy, Issaries, or Chalana Arroy support - and nothing for other cultures. There are also some conversion notes for using existing 13th Age classes in Glorantha, like adapting the existing Cleric or Paladin classes for the Dara Happan gods.
  4. That's also my favorite, and I originally came here to post it, but then I noticed that it is in fact the HQ:G example that the OP referred to. For further inspiration, in addition to the usually mentioned koans I also like Nasrudin stories, though they're not generally formed as questions so they take a little more work if you want to adapt them to that format: (It's folklore so there are many variations and collections; that particular one I got from http://www.rodneyohebsion.com/mulla-nasrudin.htm).
  5. There are a couple in old books. The Nysalor cult writeup from the Cult Compendium (and I assume Cults of Terror before that, but I only have the reprint compilation) gives this as an example: Q: "What is the difference between a Silent Movement?" A: "The sound of a man dying" And then "The Devil's Playground" scenario in The Big Rubble has these four questions, with discussions about what "acceptable" answers are: Q: "It is like getting a man out of a thousand-span deep well without a scrap of rope." A: The answer is "death", which removes the man from the well surely enough. Q: "What is in my pocket?" A: The answer is simply to reach inside his pocket and look. Nothing is in his pocket; therefore an enlightened answer would be "Nothing yet, or anymore" or "The same thing that is in your mind, master" Q: "How may one retrieve a stone from the depths of the sea without getting his sleeve wet?" A: "Come back when the sea is gone" is the best answer, but also acceptable is "take off the shirt" Q: "Where does the fire go when I put it out?" A: "Into my hands and mind where I store it for tomorrow" or "it goes to rest in its bed, the wood"
  6. Unferth

    Troll Diet

    13G is written mostly in a conversational tone that doesn't always make a clear IC or OOC description - although I'm suspect of reading any of the source material as entirely lacking in cultural bias, even the bits that aren't clearly an in-universe document. I read that particular bit as intended to be a description of what (some) characters believe, possibly incorrectly. For what it's worth, 13G includes some specific trollish powers that tie in with this - EG the Zorak Zorani class has "Eat Chaos" as a power, and Chaos creatures they use it on "can't regenerate or otherwise return to life, at least not during this battle or any time soon." So there's wiggle room in that for how permanent a GM wants that to be, but it's definitely a thing they do sometimes. In that game's take on things, anyway. Moving a long way up the power scale, Guide vol. 1 says on page 121, under the "The Final Battle of Mortality" header: "Kyger Litor left her Castle of Lead to devour Chaos at the Grey Hills of Dread." And then the Glorantha Sourcebook adds some details under the header "I Fought We Won", P. 129: "Kyger Litor withstood a siege of her Castle of Lead against the victorious armies of Krarsht, and then her trolls sallied forth to devour them." Not that everything Kyger Litor did during the God Time is an option for mortals! But personally I'd only rarely have trolls suffer negative consequences for eating Chaotic creatures.
  7. Unferth

    Troll Diet

    Guide to Glorantha vol. 1 p. 94 says, under the “Culture” header: ”Trolls thrive best on organic matter, and dirt and stones are usually only eaten as snacks or as a last resort. Their favorite foods are dwarf and elf. Their least favorite foods are feces and air.” The same text is reprinted in the Bestiary. No discussion there of reasons, though. I also remembered reading something about consumption by trolls as a method of stopping chaotic regeneration, but the only clear statement I can find so far is from 13th Age Glorantha: “Those with long memories know that when Yelm was truly dead, trapped in the Underworld during the Gods War, Darkness powers like the trolls helped save the world from Chaos. Of course, that’s partly because the powers of Darkness can devour Chaos without harm as easily as Darkness can devour everyone else!” (P. 33) ”Powers of Darkness” is a broader category than just the Uz, so I personally wouldn’t extrapolate too broadly from that, but it’s definitely an idea in operation.
  8. HQ: Glorantha is explicit that it is magical - the breakout box on p. 160 says "Tradetalk is a magical language and is easily understood and quickly learned even by foreigners and non-humans." Not that Runequest needs to use all the same interpretations as Heroquest, but the idea's not coming out of nowhere.
  9. There are a couple of Borges references, some of which I think got called out on the group read thread. One that as far as I can tell on a quick review of the relevant thread did not is that Tetlor in Junora (p. 216) is right out of "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius". The Irensavalist holy man's name "Tloenos" is a pretty clear acknowledgement, in case there was any doubt. Herodotus's akephaloi or headless men showed up somewhere in the islands, but I don't know if that really counts as obscure or not.
  10. Since you already have access to it, I'd start with Appendix J: The Hero Wars in the Guide to Glorantha. Both the Sourcebook and King of Sartar add some information, though I haven't done a close reading on what each of them add to what's in that appendix. King of Sartar provides multiple mutually contradictory in-world histories and commentaries, pointing out some areas where the Guide version just gives one version (the Guide generally uses the version that's most positive towards Argrath, and without some of the material that supports the "multiple Argraths" analysis). It also gives documents describing events past 1625. The Glorantha Sourcebook has a history of Dragon Pass that goes up to 1625, but it's not as detailed as King of Sartar. There's other good material in the Guide, but if you're just looking for Dragon Pass material King of Sartar is probably a better source. But be prepared for unreliable narrators!
  11. There's a reference in the wiki, sourced to the Fortunate Succession, saying that Magnificus had "the beard-growing magic". Whatever that might be - apparently it was notable enough or rare enough to be worth recording, though.
  12. Dodge skill description, p. 165. It's only required vs. missiles, you can dodge in melee without taking the whole round. Or at least that's one way to interpret "[Dodge] takes one entire melee round when used against missile attacks, and cannot be used in strike ranks while the adventurer is occupied with shooting a missile weapon."
  13. Yeah, that's actually unchanged from RQ2 - including being twice as effective against chaos.
  14. That appears technically legal. I think if there's a real problem there it's with Extension rather than Sword Trance. Year-long Bear's Strength is pretty ridiculous too, just for one further example. I liked the idea I saw suggested here disallowing recovering the rune points (and maybe MP?) until the extended spell ends. Sword Trance is still only a one point rune spell - at least, I don't see any suggestion that Extension or the multiple MPs invested would also make the spell harder to dispel - so a 1-point Dismiss Magic or 2-point Dispel Magic deals with this. But it does seem a bit over the top until that's dealt with. Or, of course, the GM tells the player not to do that. But I don't like rules that require too much of that.
  15. Oh, sure, they're available at creation if you want. But you probably won't have a group all using such spells. And the Trance spells affect only the caster, so spreading them around is not an option even if you have the rune points and MP to spare. They're certainly high end offensive magic, no argument there.
  16. It's a somewhat similar design to the RQ2 Chalana Alloy "Heal Area" spell - which also survives into RQ:G as the universally available rune spell "Heal Wound", though without the option to spend multiple Rune points to reduce the MP cost. (The Chalana Alloy cult has even stronger healing rune spells, as does Ernalda. I don't think they'll feel let down that other people can access Heal Wound.) None of Axe Trance, Berserker, or Sword Trance are widely available, for what it's worth - unless I've overlooked something skimming through, they're only available through the Babeester Gor, Storm Bull, or Humakt cults respectively in the core book.
  17. I mentioned this earlier, so - dealing only with sorcery: 9 spells can use any rune. Sometimes in conjunction with a required additional rune, such as Stasis for Castback or Truth for Identify Spell. 2 spells (bind and dominate elemental) require any elemental rune. Air has 3 spells, Darkness 2, Fire/Sky 8, Earth 2, Water 7. Illusion is required for one spell from each element, Movement shows up for some, and Water has both Harmony and Disharmony spells. Harmony has 2 spells, Disharmony 1. All require either Water or Fertility. Fertility has 3 spells, Death has 4. Movement has 4 spells, Stasis has 4. All the Movement spells also require a specific element. Truth has 10 spells, Illusion has 7. 5 of those Illusion spells are the basic illusion for each of the five senses, each of which requires the appropriate element. Of the Form runes, Spirit is well represented with 8 spells. Two are bind and dominate elemental, which as noted above require any elemental rune. Man has 3 spells, Beast 1. Moon has only one spell, Moonfire. It also requires Fire/Sky. So it's not a great choice at present, but is at least ahead of Plant. From the techniques: Command has 24 spells. Combine, 19. Dispel has 8, Summon has 10, and Tap has 2. Separate as has been previously mentioned has none. So the Lhankor Mhy favored rune of Truth and technique of Command are the most represented, probably reflecting the Dragon Pass/Sartarite emphasis of this book. Of the elemental runes, water unlocks the most total spells through its minors of Air and Fire, but in practice I think Fire is more useful in typical adventures. Though really the need to work each spell's skill up independently looks like a major constraint as well. Unless you can always count on having the spare MP and time to do ritual behavior at sympathetic times and places.
  18. I think it depends on how many MP you have to dump into them. They're both +10% skill per MP spent on top of the rune point, so it can take a lot of MP to match Berserker on a high skill character. They don't come with the negative side effects of Berserker, though - or the stacked con boosts and countermagic, or the extra power versus Chaos.
  19. There's also a Sword Trance (rune) spell that works the same way for swords.
  20. Are you talking about rune magic or sorcery? For sorcery, Water and Fire have many spells. Stasis has Castback, Neutralize Armor, Preserve Item, and Stop Vessel. Of which Neutralize Armor is notable strong, though I imagine most sorcerers who know it will know it through insight from Movement expertise instead. I did the per-rune/technique sorcery breakdown, mostly just to make sure that I wasn't overlooking hidden gems for Moon or something. Water came out less dominant among the elements than it seemed given all the nautical spells, I think Darkness may be a bit underrepresented but the rest all have a good spread. The Form runes are spotty especially given that they don't provide any secondary insights, although Spirit has obvious uses. Of the power pairs, I think harmony/disharmony is least covered but that's from memory.
  21. There's a chart on p. 257. The part I'm not sure about is Seven Mothers cult spirit magic. It says "Befuddle and Glamour are provided at normal cult prices. All other spirit magic is available at twice the normal cult cost." So...cult members can learn most anything from their temple, but at listed price? (cult price=half cost, so twice cult price=normal price) Beats trying to find a friendly shaman, I guess - I'm not sure I have a sense for whether the listed cult spirit magic is discounted specializations and anything not forbidden is typically available but at full price (which is how I think RQ2 worked, right?) or whether cults only teach their speciality spirit magic and leave people to find other teachers for other spells.
  22. It's a bit lower than that, I think. At least if I'm following the original proposal. You'll only end up allocating 19 dice out of your 23 - 3 each to the 5 3d6 characteristics, plus 2 more each to SIZ and INT. You'd have to work out the average of 25 dice, keep the top 19. I think it comes out a bit better than just rerolling 1s - EG if it were 24 keep the best 18 on average you''d expect to see 4 1s and 2 2s discarded, for a total of 76 or an average of about 4.2 per die. 25 keep 19 is marginally worse than that, since you're adding more dice without increasing the number you get to discard, but it won't be worse than just adding another d6 onto that 76 total - 79.5 is a lower bound for the average. Add in the 12 guaranteed points for INT and SIZ and you're at about 92. Combined with arranging to taste and you're probably fine. I ran a quick simulation of 10,000 sets of such rolls to back up my figures - 80 comes in as the most common value before the SIZ/INT points, with 560 such sets. 5303 of them - so more than half - fell in the 75-85 central range. 2134 were above 85, maxing out at 2 lucky rolls of 103 total. So 115 after adding in the SIZ/INT dice - that would leave even the pregens looking a bit anemic! And the remaining 2563 were below 75, with a minimum of a single sad 47. 8180 came out with at least a 72, which would be the "discard if the average is 12 or below" optional reroll rule threshold once INT+SIZ are added in. I worked that out just for comparison.
  23. IMO it depends on whether you're trying to approximate the listed die rolls with none of the optional "It's ok to reroll/discard" rules, to approximate die rolling with some or all of the reroll rules, or to match the pregens. Rerolling 1s, one of the reroll rules, shifts the average value of a d6 from 3.5 to 4, meaning the average of a 3d6 stat shifts from 10.5 to 12. A 2d6+6 stat shifts from an average of 13 to 14. So across the board average stats for such rolls would be 5*12+2*14 = 60 + 28 = 88 points. Slightly less if you read it as "reroll 1s once" rather than "reroll until you get a non-1 result". The optional "you may discard the stats if the average is 12 or below" rule would give a cutoff of 84 stat points. All of which would be before the 3 discretionary points granted for characters with a total of 92 of fewer points. So you could easily make a case for 87, 91, or 95 points - the first from the minimum average cutoff after the floating +3, the second from average rolls, and the third from the cap to qualify for the floating +3. Again, all before rune bonuses. All of which ignores the issue of picking exactly the breakpoints for skill bonuses - already a slight risk given the floating +3 most rolled characters will have and rune bonuses. But I trust anyone considering using bought rather than rolled stats can work around that either through group consensus or perhaps adding some random jitter to the bought stats - EG reserve some of the points to be distributed randomly or perhaps by the GM. The pregens are all around 100 stat points give or take 2-3 points each after rune bonuses, so either they suggest a very generous ability score generation method or are not useful as examples. If I wanted to take them as indicative of the kinds of characters the game was designed for, I'd give at least 95 stat points before rune bonuses. They certainly make it look like 3d6/2d6+6 unmodified is not even close to the "default".
  24. Would Dying Moon substitute for the Spirit Rune here? EG a Jakaleel initiate with the Dying Moon phase but no Spirit rune wants a charm from a Full Moon Lune. Is that a standalone ability, or a breakout from their Dying Moon phase? For now I'm just trying to understand the rules as presented, not varying things yet! I had been under the impression that even without initiating into a New God cult, someone with a Moon Phase can create Glamours from it if they accept the Stretch penalty - p. 182 is where I'm getting this idea: "A Lunar magician can use her Lunar Phase to create glamours mimicking the runes that Phase can replace. The direct use of the Lunar Phase incurs a Stretch penalty of -6 (see page 103) - unless: (1) the Lunar is an initiate of a Lunar New God cult and is creating glamours in accordance with the teachings of that New God; or (2) is using a Lunar Grimoire. The use of the Lunar Phase as an augment does not incur a Stretch penalty." So my interpretation of that text had been that anyone with a Lunar Phase can use those rules to create Stretch supernatural effects, and then that initiating to a New God makes appropriate glamours not a stretch. (So evocations within the defined parameters for most, and charms for Jakaleel? I guess glamour charms remain stretches for those not initiated into the Jakeleel cult? Kind of a tangent though.) People who have their phase kindled via the Seven Mothers cult as a whole and don't initiate into a subcult or into an independent New God cult like Yara Aranis would have all their glamours as stretches unless they're using a grimoire, as would a subcult initiate creating a glamour that matches their rune phase but not their cult teachings or a grimoire. If these rules are even intended to cover non-subcult Seven Mothers members, anyway - on the one hand the Lunar Cults section on p. 184 talks about kindling that way, on the other the Seven Mothers Initiates section only covers gaining the Lunar Phase via direct initiation to a subcult. The Seven Mothers subcult writeups are pretty clear, it's mostly just that one paragraph about glamours mimicking the replaced runes apparently being open to all Lunar magicians that leaves things unclear for me at this point. Anyway, thanks again for your help! I worry that this sounds argumentative or demanding and I don't mean to be that.
  25. Interesting, thanks! Especially for the details from P:GTA. That is definitely more detailed than the HQ: G version. Is that Praxian Tradition diagram from a published or forthcoming book? That looks like the kind of information I'd find useful understanding better how spirit magic works. So initiates might work with lunes of all phases, hanging them off the embodied Spirit rune just as a more conventional spirit worshipper might? That's a nice degree of flexibility. Hmm. That I didn't quite get from the HQ:G writeup, maybe it's just a consequence of trying to fit a quirky Lunar magic system into a book that's not really about playing Lunars. It seems - based just on what's written in HQ: G - that a character with the rune should be able to EG use a Glamour based on the embodied Harmony rune, maybe soothing suffering or anger. Without a relevant New God cult teaching it's a Stretch, and it's directly using a Rune keyword for magic so it's broad unless the character pays to specialize the ability, but allowed to describe supernatural effects. Right? Maybe I should just get P:GTA and read the version there. He's spending extra hero points because he's buying new breakout abilities rather than concentrating on his grimoires or rune rating, right? Is there something I'm overlooking that would make adding a Full Moon Lune's Charm or a cult-appropriate Glamour more expensive to add than a new grimoire, or adding a spell to an existing grimoire? It seems like it's all dependent on his Full Moon phase unless he goes for standalone abilities, so it's just a question of what best fits the described effect. Well, I guess if he buys up the Grimoire ability above the +1 it starts at new spells start higher. But from a points perspective that only helps if you never want magic outside that grimoire, otherwise you might as well just spend the 2 for the rune increase instead.
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