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About womble

  • Rank
    Senior Member


  • RPG Biography
    Old Timer - Basic and Advanced D&D through to 3.5; RQ2 (mostly 3 though); Ars Magica; L5R; Shadowrun; Traveller; Exalted; Aberrant; Unknown Armies.
    LARPer - Peckforton-children, large scale Fests, one-shot Con games; Large freeforms.
  • Current games
    Pendragon (GPC); Wild Talents; Empire (LARP); CoC (20s UK)
  • Blurb
    I've strong simulationist tendencies, and I like my fun, serious. Just bought RQ:G and inspired to start a new game, if I can drag some old players in.

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  1. The recent thread about an Ulanin Subcult for Orlanth triggered some wondering about other Orlanthi subcults and how they work together within the overall Religion of Sartar. I suspect some of the wonderings might apply to other pantheons also. So we know that (by default) an Orlanth Initiate chooses one of Adventurous (or Vinga) or Thunderous when they become Initiated by devoting one point of personal POW. They then gain the 'right' to access all the 'general' Orlanth Special Rune Spells ("all subcults") and the ones offered by the specific subcult they join. We also know that when a Sartarite becomes an Orlanthi Chieftain, they also become Initiated into Orlanth Rex, and gain the ability to access another set of Rune Magic. We know you get a separate pool of Rune Points for use with each God you Initiate with, usually Associated Gods to a previous Initiation. I think that spells of all subcults of the same God would be drawing on the same, single, pool of Rune Points to be cast. In the example of Initiation to Orlanth Rex, does the new Chieftain lose their potential access to the spells of their default subcult that they haven't yet learned? I don't think it would be fair to remove access to subcult Special Rune Magic that they had already sacrificed for, but it's possible. I'd assume going 'up' to Rex would require another POW to be sacrificed (for one of the Rex spells). Is it possible/acceptable to switch between Adventurous and Thunderous (either way)? More than once? I'd assume this would take a point of POW, if it were to be done. And it raises the same question as for Rex Initiates. Is it possible to be Initiated in both Adventurous and Thunderous at the same time? If it is, is that also possible with Rex? How do 'Hero Cults' work? They're not really a 'thing' in the core rules. Are they 'additional' subcults that grant potential access to a different set of Special Rune Magic? Or do they just grant access to the one (or a very few) additional spells specific to their own myth? As 'full' subcults, they'd switch (or not) the character's pool of potential spells to sacrifice for; if they're 'lesser' and simply don't offer that many spells, would that offer be additional to the 'main' subcult, or replace it (making adherents of the Hero Cult very much more specialised than general co-Religionists). An alternative mechanism would be to have a Hero Cult be a separate (but Associated) Cult: this would imply, I think, a separate pool of Rune Points for that Cult's Rune Spells (Common and Special), which is its own kettle of fish. Any thoughts or answers?
  2. In RQG the Rune Points used to fuel the magic would only be regainable by a) Worship of the appropriate God; b) Votive items kept in Sacred places. The first source of replenishment wouldn't be very easy to achieve, I suspect. The second source would depend on the items being maintained and retaining their connection to the congregant. I can see that being more likely to persist, especially if the fate of the person was unknown to the custodian of the Votive item.
  3. womble

    Question for GMs: enchantment question

    Another potential mitigation of the tactic: If the Urzani is bound solely into the spearhead, the wielder would have to cast a control-type spell on the Elemental, using appropriate Sight spells to be able to perceive it 'at range' because they're not touching the enchantment, and they can't see the spearhead for the same reason as they can't cause a released Elemental to materialise in someone's gut normally (their bodily particles are in the way). If the Salamander is bound into the spear 'generally', how specific is the "release" command: would the Elemental form around the whole spear, burning the hands of the wielder? Would it preferentially form where it is not enveloped by soggy flesh? Given that there are other forms of Impaling weapons out there, how about doing this to arrowheads? Or a dagger with a Large Salamander bound...
  4. womble

    Question for GMs: enchantment question

    Ah. Trickier to prohibit then... Aside from thinking it's a bit of a bend of the "...who is affected by the enchantments in an item (or who is not affected)..." purpose of the Target Condition, I'm wondering how it applies. What your players are setting up is a Binding Enchantment. That doesn't have a target other than the Spirit to be bound. However, the actual Target Condition is nugatory, since a weapon, once impaled, is stuck in the victim, and there's plenty of time for the wielder to actively release the bound Elemental (assuming they are included in the User Conditions of the weapon), or even enough time to cast a Control Salamander and then release it. This would also apply to the victim, if they were aware of the presence of the Elemental in the spear tip. I have assumed (and for the purposes of MG, that makes it true . I recognise I may be wrong in the case of YG) that when a Spirit is released from its Binding, it does not materialise around the enchantment (because that would make releasing Bound Salamanders, or, indeed any Large Elemental, pretty fraught, and something you'd much prefer to do at range), but at some point nearby (in my Glorantha, that would be the 'reasonable amount of the relevant Element' within range), so the victim of such a stabbing could release the Salamander to somewhere else (rather than inside their own body). Lacking the requirement for a focal quantity of the element, I speculate on what is preventing any released Elemental from being conjured into solid/fluid existence within the boundaries of another entity's body, with similar effects to the spear-borne delivery system. Even if it's "sight targeting", releasing an Earth elemental to manifest at the back of someone's throat and have it pop into existence inside their head could be catastrophic. It depends on how you envision the Elemental appearing. I struggle to visualise it without (my mandatory) focus of some existing element: does it expand to full cubic metreage uniformly from a point, or flow into existence a bit at a time? For me, the Elemental appears quickly enough that all four would cause catastrophic damage to the target they appeared inside of. Again, since this isn't a 'normal' attack mode with Elementals, there's got to be a reason it's not. For me 'coolness factor' doesn't trump 'overpowered' in all cases. If the logical consequences of allowing a thing are going to make the world look different in a way that is going, in time, to tend Game Fun towards zero (how much fun is it going to be if every non-anti-fire-Rune spear has a Salamander popping out of it?), all the 'acute' maximisation of Game Fun in the world isn't worth it. So for me, allowing this would be pretty much starting the end game of the campaign, preparatory to starting another where the caper does not work.
  5. womble

    Question for GMs: enchantment question

    I read it differently: when it says the SIZ of the elemental doesn't add to the mass of the binding item, I took that to mean that the element still had to be present. It also conveniently sidesteps the conundrum Pentallion has posed, which is, IMO, a Good Thing. But it really isn't very clear. IMG, no. And no. The Summon spells require "...at least some reasonable amount of that element...". Ignite a small bundle of sticks or leaves, and your Salamander can appear focused on that. A match or candle flame isn't enough.
  6. womble

    Question for GMs: enchantment question

    By the same token, if it's as obvious as the Salamander-spear trick would be if elementals didn't need some quantity of their element present to manifest, it'd be standard practice. There's a reason why it isn't.
  7. womble

    Heat Metal metallurgical question

    Your spear shaft would have to be made of something pretty special to avoid becoming frangible charcoal in the socket of the head, and breaking off as soon as it struck anything with even small force. Firespear (another Lodrili spell) is meant to be cast on fighting weapons, is Rune Magic and could be Extended to year-long duration (followed by a short downtime before it gets recast, and the spear shaft wouldn't suffer, because the effect is 'designed' that way. Repurposing a Heat Metal as an ersatz Boon of Kargan Tor should take a similar investment in time, sacced POW and MP.
  8. womble

    Question for GMs: enchantment question

    It'd need another point for the Condition on the Command Cult Spirit to cast it on the Elemental just before it's released. And the wielder would need to have the two Rune Points to power the spell, since the Matrix doesn't do that, as far as I've read, RAW. And it wouldn't work anyway IMG because the Elemental needs a volume of fire available to manifest within; the consequences of 'released-from-a-binding' Elementals not needing some of their element available to manifest in/around would be awkward and beyond the intentions of the game, I feel. Which would be to clear off, sharpish, back to some more fiery place. Or just go around setting light to anything flammable. And unless some Control was cast at the time of release, it'd be a one shot per summon... I think these worries come under the heading of the 'unintended consequences' that allowing the elemental to manifest other than in a (nominal) quantity of their element (and no, being mostly water doesn't make a human body count as water) would draw down upon your Glorantha if you permitted this.
  9. From personal experience, I can attest that SIZ and DEX in combat are vastly over-emphasised in all editions of RQ rules. Skill is the most important factor in who strikes (effectively, which is what an RQ attack roll purports to represent) first. I have fought in knife-fights with a guy a foot taller than me, who played squash really well (indicating decent reflexes and coordination, i.e. DEX), and he couldn't get first hit on me, or even hit me on the way out. I did a lot of knife fighting. I'm rubbish at squash and he beat me seven ways from Sunday at that. He was new to the lines and angles of stabbidj.
  10. It is the 'standard cost' to learn that spell, in 'Lunars' (the standard currency unit). It's mentioned, kinda in passing, on p253:
  11. I read that as Shield being a special exception to the "Countermagic and Protection are incompatible" rule.
  12. womble

    Battleboard Scale and Grid

    Y'all do know that the roots of the combat system for RQ are based in SCAdian heavy-armoured stick-fighting, yes? Apologies for pinging someone else's apparent lack of experience when they're making assertions as to what combat ought to be like. The remainder stands as my experience at every level of combat beyond the formal one-on-one duel: people can be and regularly are blindsided in combat on flat open fields because they see one threat or target, fixate on it and miss the other danger that is developing just out of their field of vision. Not that it matters much what combat 'ought' to be like any more, since the resolution system has skewed, I consider, quite a long way from its simulationist roots (see movement, strike ranks and instakill crits), so do "what the story demands" by all means. I'd encourage everyone to try and use all the tools available, though.
  13. womble

    Battleboard Scale and Grid

    You've not been in many fights. People try and look around, but if you're actually fighting someone, you really don't have very much time spare to be checking what's around you. Me, I've been in lots of fights, most of them as a melee fighter, and I've got pretty good situational awareness, but that's 30-odd years of experience. I see unengaged people getting flanked all the time, even when I'm yelling my head off to make the poor saps aware. Battle is probably a better skill to use to represent whether a fighter 'feels' when they're getting ganged up on/surrounded.
  14. womble

    Movement Rate

    Aye, the movement system, RAW, is thoroughly borked. It bears little relationship to reality (either in terms of ground covered or how movement affects what else is going on in a round) and drags the combat system further from simulation and towards abstraction than I'm comfortable with. It requires overmuch interpretation by the GM of how it's supposed to work outside the very narrow confines in which it could be considered to be 'believable'.
  15. I'd agree with that interpretation.